Thursday, December 11, 2008

December 11, 2008 - I Missed My Cancerversary

Generally speaking, it’s not a good thing to miss an anniversary. Spouses and significant others tend not to be amused by such lapses of decorum.

When it comes to the anniversary of one’s cancer diagnosis, though – one’s cancerversary, some call it – it’s different. A cancerversary can actually be a good thing to forget.

I missed mine this year. Even though the date sits right up there at the top of this blog, bold as brass, I missed it. This December 2 marked three years since that day Claire and I sat in Dr. Lerner’s office and heard him deliver the news.

What does it mean that I forgot my cancerversary? It means I continue to feel fine, even though tests and scans keep flagging enlarged lymph nodes here and there. It means I’ve been so busy, I haven’t been thinking about cancer as much as I used to. It means, in simple calendar terms, I’ve simply put more distance between that day and today.

I can’t relax completely, of course. I can’t put it behind me. I’m not in remission, after all.

That’s the paradox of this indolent variety of the illness. Except for that flickering scan image on some radiologist’s monitor, you feel fine. Life goes on. Yet, all the while, silently and sneakily, the malignancy continues to lurk, and sometimes even to grow. It’s the tiny, hard pea under the stack of mattresses.

Still and all, it’s probably a good thing that December 2 passed me by, without black crepe and dirges. It shows I’m slowly learning how to live with this thing.

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