Why I hate celebrating

I have repeatedly refused to celebrate “lasts” throughout this illness – last chemo, last day in the hospital, last GVH flare. For some people, it helps to ring the end of treatment bell or make a poster celebrating their “last chemo!!” And I totally respect that. For me, celebrating a last feels fake because I never really know it will be the last. For all I know, I could be back to chemo tomorrow.

I keep letting myself get excited about the prospect of being free from central lines and steroids and being immunocompromised. And I just keep getting crushed over and over. So this leads me to consider – is it naive of me to keep getting excited? or is it more of a testiment to my optimism that I can manage to repeatedly be so hopeful? Probably both, right?

I have been struggling immensely these past few weeks between GVH and increased steroids and some weird new symptoms like fatigue and headaches. I am 11 months out from transplant and not a day goes by that I don’t think about cancer or GVH or pain management. I look forward to a day (far in the future) when I don’t even have to be optimistic anymore. Instead, I hope that I will simply exist – for a second, a minute, an hour – without remembering that I had cancer.

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About Brooke Vittimberga

I have cancer...oops
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One Response to Why I hate celebrating

  1. Barbara Cohen says:

    Brooke,
    I HATE that you continue to struggle with this f’ing AML & its aftermath. Enough already! You’ve done more than your share… I wish the doctors could give you a specific date/time when you can breathe a sigh of relief & move on with your life, but every person responds differently. I am an eternal optimist, but recall only too well getting very discouraged at times, thinking there was no end in sight.
    It’s easy for me, now almost 10 years out from my transplant, to tell you to keep positive, but I really do believe that attitude is a huge part of recovery. Please try to focus on the fact that you have already beat many odds by still being here. And you can beat this. Its a long & really shitty road. But I know that you will get there, get your life back, & yes, there will come a time when you will go for a few days at a time when you won’t think about this crappy experience. It will always be a part of who you are & you will never completely forget. There’s a St. Jude’s hospital ad playing currently, with a young girl who talks about having AML & I have to switch the channel whenever it comes on.
    But it is very cool, the first time you realize that you went an entire day, almost forgetting that you’ve been dealt this shitty card.
    Keep that wonderful sense of humor & keep plugging away, a day at a time. And know that the worst part is behind you. Hang in there! I’m looking forward to our celebration…
    Barb

    Liked by 1 person

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