I’m Still Standing!

It’s time to celebrate ~ my second year of survival of cancer.

It’s also time to be grateful.

I believe the number one reason I am still here today is because of all the people who have reached out to me with such love and care since my diagnosis!

Great thanks and love ~  ~

~to my husband for having to balance caring for me and for himself as we both travel on this difficult journey!

~to my sons. They have each been there for me. Phil has lived with my daily care with numerous journeys to the cancer center and seems to have the uncanny ability to know what I need. Tim is available on a moment’s notice and seems to call just when I need someone to call or realized I needed a ride. Steven comes into town and pushes me to walk and rejoin the world on days when I didn’t want to, but needed to; he’s helped me find my energy when I just wanted to lay on the couch forever.

~to my siblings who have all reached out in their many different and kind ways to let me know how important I am to each of them. Since both our parents and their siblings died young we have all been on “cancer watch” and have lived our lives in the moment, especially since, as one brother so aptly stated, some of us are beyond our expiration date.  They haven’t stopped pushing me to continue living my life and not let pancreatic cancer own every moment.  

~to my “fan club” who have sent at least one hundred cards and well wishes. I never knew how much a simple card can mean! I also received gifts and gifts and gifts! Prayer shawls, candy, treats, books, plants, pictures, heartfelt sayings, special religious items, clothes, socks, drive-by coffee dropped off in the front yard, special foods dropped on my porch, meals for my family, gift certificate for delivered food, activity books, blankets – I’m sorry I can’t even remember it all. The first year felt like it was a weekly Christmas.

~to everyone who has asked how I’m doing. As much as I want to live my life as normal as possible, I also don’t want my struggle ignored.

~ for all the calls and texts. People are afraid to call, but it can be terrible when no one calls. Since each person’s illness journey is different, I especially like when people have asked how they could stay in touch. I can ignore the calls when I can’t talk. I can talk when I need to. I liked when people remembered a tough day and sent a text to just say they were thinking about me.  

~for all the invitations. Wow!  I was not forgotten! I was included!  I went everywhere when I had those well moments. I have loved the walks, coffees, lunches, shopping, book clubs, parties, plays and sharing a glass of wine. I also appreciate those who have helped drive me to appointments. I’m blessed with such great friends.

~for all the prayers and prayer and prayers. I sincerely believe in the power of prayer. Thanks to my high school besties who reached out to a priest in Door County for me to receive the Sacrament of the Sick as they surrounding me with their love. I believe in it’s power.

Sometimes we don’t know what to do for someone when there really isn’t anything you can do. Throughout this journey, through the kind reaching out of everyone I know, I have learned what I can do for someone else. 

I hope this list of thanks helps you for other people in your life when they have a moment of need and there’s nothing you can do.  With your help, we can all remain standing!


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This is my blog about living my life with Stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer—End stage. I joked about writing this imaginary blog when I spent a year on a treatment that allowed me only 10 days to feel well enough to live a fairly normal life. (Actually normal doesn’t even really exist for me anymore!) To earn those good days, I spent the previous 10 days living in post-chemo treatment physical hell – that also became normal in a perverse way. I’m also writing to honor those who are diagnosed with Stage Four Pancreatic Cancer. You might live longer than you expect and I want you to have someone who tells you what that’s like. There aren’t many role models for people with this because, well, they’re usually gone. So, this is for you. Maybe your journey will be similar to mine. Actually, it will probably be very different because “everyone is different.” Even still, maybe this will still be a bit of a guide.

6 thoughts on “I’m Still Standing!”

  1. Thanks for reminding me not to be fearful of calling/texting/visiting because I might end up being an annoyance rather than supportive! Your honesty and insight are helpful to all of us in trying to get into your mind about what you need. You are loved by SO many people, a testament to the person you are and the life you have lived!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow Kathy…. what a beautiful, beautiful message. It is indeed a time of celebration. Happy 2nd year to you and Happy New Year to you, you amazing woman! You are so inspiring. Thank you for being you! Sending beams and beams of love and prayers to you!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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