Dirty Details of Cancer

Parenting with a terminal diagnosis

It is just the hardest thing when you find out that your child is too worried about his mother, to focus in school. I was told by the teacher that my oldest asks to call me to make sure I am doing ok. I cannot stand the fact that they have to worry about their mother dying. Your parents’ mortality should not be on your mind at their ages. It’s hard enough as an adult to lose a parent. Along with the life of being a kid and their mom is always sick, they are dealing with quite a bit. I feel like they have had to grow up faster. They are pretty self-sufficient and everyone is always impressed with how well-behaved they are. I need them to be independent and helpful because sometimes I don’t have the energy, or I am in too much pain.

I keep a smile on my face to keep them from worrying.

I have been honest with them from the beginning, and I leave the door open for them to ask questions. They know exactly what is happening because I don’t want any resentfulness later. It’s been especially hard to muster up the courage to give them a new update and then I find out, they already know. That really hurts me that I am not given the chance to tell them. Also, the boys may think I am not being forth-coming, but in reality someone beat me to it. The boys just hug me and say I know, then tell me they love me. They are both beyond sweet and way too smart. Like any parent, I wish them wellness and happiness forever. In saying that, am I taking that happiness away by letting them see me go through this? That has always been in the back of my mind.

They ask things like “mom, will you be here when I get married?”

The boys favorite restaurant!
The boys favorite restaurant!

I always feel like a bad parent for missing things in their lives, and I don’t know how to navigate as a cancer patient. So many firsts and so many lasts that I have missed over the last 6 years. It completely breaks my heart. I want to make every birthday and holiday as big and crazy as possible, in case its the last one for me. I had a total panic attack on Christmas day while we were doing our family holiday stuff. I completely broke down and cried in the bathroom for over an hour. I was so scared it was my last Christmas with my boys. It was like I was already gone, and watching from the other side. My anxiety is always high which is not good for healing. All this and just dealing with normal life is so much to deal with. We have a very tight family bond and Shawn is the best father in the world, so we will do our best to continue to be a happy family.

Preston's Birthday!
Preston’s Birthday!

I can’t live every single day like it’s my last, (sorry Hallmark) but I can make the special ones count even more than they ever did before. I just want as much time as possible with them, but without seeing me in pain. No one wants to watch this, not even me and I’m going through it. So, I continue to fight cancer,work my businesses and focus on my boys.

If you are battling a terminal illness, my hats off to you for fighting. Please know I am here fighting too. Try to keep yourself focused on something outside of all the oncology appointments so you can keep a level head. And hopefully it will keep you positive and keep you going so you will win your fight.

I focus on my business and my boys, not cancer, so I don’t go crazy.

Thank you for your support.

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