Saturday, August 25, 2007

misc social run-ins

A few random cancer-related run-ins...

We had our first community band practice for the season last week. It was nice to go and play :) It was nice to have a social outlet, too.

Anyway, one of the tuba players came up to me at the break, with the best way into a conversation I've heard yet: "Can I ask?" I said sure, and we talked, and another guy came over and the three of us talked and it was good.

Someone else at rehearsal came up to me as we were packing up to tell me that she'd been there and was out living life again. She had breast cancer 8 years ago, did the chemo thing and is fine. While I know that there are lots and lots of people who have had cancer and moved on (in a good way), it's always nice to see another.

While grocery shopping, an old guy in a little scooter came up to me and asked if I had breast cancer. No, Hodgkins. Oh, well, his wife had breast cancer 20 years ago and is still doing great.

I wrote a little card for "the new girl" who I sat next to at chemo. I took it when I went for my shot on Friday, knowing she was getting one, too, but I didn't know what time. I was there first thing in the morning and she wasn't there. One of the nurses took it and put it on her chart so she could get it when she came in. I offered, in the card, to be her cancer buddy if she wanted one. I told her that when I was starting out, I had no interest in any such thing and so I wouldn't be at all offended if she declined.

Today, I got a really nice e-mail from her, saying I really helped her unpleasant experience to be much nicer and that she'd be glad to have a chemo buddy. It turns out our next treatments should overlap, so I'll likely see her then. I hope her weekend is going OK.

I called the oncology counselor and left a message saying that I'd like to set up an appointment to discuss this anger thing. Though it has subsided, should it rear it's head again, I'd like to have some coping skills. I think I'll also talk about my anxiety about the side effects of the radiation, and see if she can help me get back on my positive track. I have some time on that one, though.

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