I am 67, single [my husband of 37 years divorced me and went to live with a young man, aged 22], parent of two adult children who are quite worried about my condition and that I am coping without anyone else in the house.
After four months of very serious hospital acquired infection [4 bouts of Cdiff colitis] following 18 weeks of RCHOP chemotherapy, I am back at work full time in the healthcare industry commuting two hours a day from home.
I was diagnosed with Stage IV mantle cell lymphoma on 9/10/15 and told that if I did not begin aggressive chemotherapy immediately, I would not need a Halloween costume. My greatest struggle is with people who want me to be afraid of the illness or of death--and I am not afraid of anything, except being a burden to my children and grandson. My community at home has been extraordinary: meals, visits, nursing care from a local mom who is at home with four small children and not nursing professionally, help from the teenagers who bring in mail and groceries and generally cheer me up with their outrageous ideas and behavior! All my life I have been taking care of others, attending my parents and friends in their final hours. It is difficult to accept help graciously.I would be grateful for others to share this journey with me. There are probably some good months left ahead as well as two pretty wonderful months already fairly symptom free.
Cancer Council NSW would like to acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which we live and work.We would also like to pay respect to elders past and present and extend that respect to all other Aboriginal people.