Chapter 23

Always at choice

Eleven months into my treatment, the intrathecal injection began leaving me feeling numb, almost as if I was paralysed from the waist down. It was only temporary and yet it was the excuse I was looking for at the time to quit the chemotherapy treatment seven months early. I knew that there had been no Cancer cells showing up for months now, and as always I was in a hurry to get on with life. I never dreamed about dragons again.

Four months after quitting the chemotherapy program, after an extensive program for cleansing my system, I purposefully got pregnant with the first of my now, four children. I say “I”, about getting pregnant, due to the fact that my husband, who went through all this with me, kind of wanted to wait till I was a little stronger before defying the doctors and having children. To say that I was closely watched during my pregnancies could only be called an understatement.

It’s been twenty-six years and at the time that I wrote this book my twenty-fifth anniversary had just gone by. My oldest daughter was twenty-three with two children of her own and is an experienced hairdresser, next to her I have another daughter who is twenty-one and you would be hard pressed to find someone more jubilant and tenacious at the same time. My third daughter, who usually has bright auburn hair, likes change, and is the one you could rely on if ever you needed to, she is fifteen now and my baby; my only boy just turned fourteen this December; a joy to be around. All are extremely intelligent and make me proud everyday I think of the choice I made to live through cancer.

Did I make the right choice all those years ago? I look at the handprints on the walls, the paraphernalia all over the house, the mess in the car, the look on my husband's face when we wake up in the morning, and yes, it was well worth it. Cancer was a series of ups and downs, and I’ve noticed my life continues on with this pattern. In these past twenty-six years my marriage has had its ups and downs. Raising four children has had its ups and downs. What I have learned, and this started with the insights that I gained from my experience with cancer, one being that life is precious, is that it is to the extent that the difficult times affect you, that you grow and place value on everything.