Sunday, September 15, 2013

Better than what . . .

As Hubby progresses in his recovery from massive surgery, we talk confidently about his feeling good at the end of the process. It’s hard for a busy, active person to have patience during day-to-day incremental improvement, but he’s doing well at maintaining a positive frame of mind.

“You’ll feel better every day . . . after a month . . . by January,” are only a few variations of happy forecasts he hears regularly in conversations with neighbors, health providers, and friends. We both nod in agreement. Then we ask, “Better than what?”

Better than now—of course! Fatigue is still a problem for Hubby, not to mention the inadvisability of(and limited ability for) engaging in strenuous activities. But it’s recently dawned on us that he might easily feel better than he felt in July or June and maybe even May! According to many cancer patients, looking backwards often illuminates a cancer symptom that was unrecognized at the time: fatigue. Hubby had been discouraged for several months before his diagnosis in August by a chronic exhaustion that was getting in the way of his work activities. Like most of us who are in our seventies, he attributed the feeling to aging, not illness.

Now we are imagining that when he feels “better,”  he could feel better than he has for a long time—even though he will be further along life's journey. Better than new? well, maybe that’s a bit much. Better than a year ago? Quite possibly. And that is an incentive for patience.

And a footnote: In my blog of August 31 (New Perspective), I wrote about his “need for additional treatment.” That was a recommendation, but based on the extremely small statistical improvement for enhanced longevity—in his particular situation—Hubby is choosing not to undergo chemotherapy. And, just as a political candidate might do, I will add: "I approve this decision."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

And so do I! Always skip that if you can, I say! Hang in there, my friend.