I heard about this trip to Delhi for cancer survivors yesterday from friend and fellow cancer survivor Joanne. Immediate adrenalin. What an amazing idea, I thought, what a lovely way to channel the energy and complexity of the new normal that post-cancer life is.
For a chance to go, #Delhi2013 hopefuls are to answer the question of how this trip would help write a chapter in their post-treatment story. My answer is, “how could it not?”
The question cancer victims often get stuck on is “why me?” Once I’d broken through my denial about having cancer—after, of all things, having been a health writer and writing about how to prevent cancer for years—I only ever once asked “why me?” I’d much rather it me than one of my children after all, or my husband or parents for that matter.
The question that made more sense to me was “why not me?” Cancer is ubiquitous, and pretty random in its selection of the path of destruction it will take. Like a tornado, it touches down where it will and moves on. Young children left motherless, mothers burying their children, none of it right or sensible.
And so to answer to the question of how this trip would be a good chapter in my life, I say again, “how could it not be?” How is it not a good chapter in anybody’s life to tap into the energy and power of love, and volunteer a little time to share it around?
The form my particular tornado took was ovarian cancer, the silent killer. Aren’t they all, really, in a way? No matter, I’m alive now, all clear for 16 months. I responded well to treatment, beat those giant and aggressive tumors into submission, and have (almost) recovered from chemo. And I plan to continue to live fully, more fully than ever before, giving statistics and odds no room in my brain.
My friend, also a cancer survivor—in her case against all odds, as she was told her cancer was terminal right off the bat, and that treatment would be futile—directed me to this site and this dream, and told me she’d like me to come with her. So here I am. It would an amazing chapter in both our lives.
I believe the cause of illness is simply, as one friend puts it, being alive, and that the cure is living. So, I know they’re only taking twelve, but why not throw in my application? What an experience it would be. I could use your help though, my lovely readers—tell the spirited Terry over at A Fresh Chapter (whose story moved me to tears) why you think I should be one of the chosen, and I’ll bring you along in my bag.