Friday, July 6, 2012

The heart knows

Cancer diagnoses Year: 2009

Cancer journey, year: 2010

Cancer journey, year: 2011
Cancer journey, year: 2012


My heart knows.
by sherry

"The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit"  (Psalm 34:18)

July 6, 2009 was a devastating day for me. It was for both Terence and I but since I'm writing I'll talk about my feelings.  It was the day we were sucker punched and caught off guard with a cancer diagnoses.  Oh wait, it was terminal too.  Worst case scenario type of thing.

I tried to remain in the doctor's office as the urologist was explaining to Terence the details of "terminal" (the entire meeting was 50 minutes long), but I couldn't breathe and though I had started to cry I was silent, not making any noise.  I felt claustrophobic and needed to get out of that small room. Such trauma to the heart makes one want to throw up.

I stepped out into the parking lot and called my daughter Nadine.  She called our son Eric.  I called my sisters. I cried some more, dried my tears and went back into the office and cried some more. After the doctor finished speaking with Terence he turned to me and handed me the kleenex box and said,  "I feel like I just damaged you".   My heart felt damaged. 

Shell shock is a good way to explain how we felt afterwards. Within the week, we thought that joining a cancer support group would be good.  We searched one out and like good students we showed up early.  The facilitator of this group (American Cancer Society)- welcomed us and inquired about "our story".    We shared the short version (the only version); cancer had completely surprised us and the doc gave T man about 9-18 months to live.  She looked at us and said
 "Sh*t, you're up a creek without a paddle".   It turned out the support group was canceled that night, but we never went back. We figured we could do without 'support' like that.

36 months later, here we are. Since hospice care started we've tried to stop counting.  We have actively forgotten and purposefully not reminded ourselves how long it's been snce he stopped chemo, or how long its been since he's been without treatment.  We've turned our brains off to any date that pertains to this cancer journey.  But I've come to realize that out heart knows.

 'Out of sorts' and 'sour' is a good way to describe how we've been feeling these past few days.
 It wasn't until about an hour ago I realized it's July 6.  It's been three years since "D" day.  
That was the day my heart was bruised.  
Although my mind didn't recognize the significance of the day, my heart did.

My heart knows the day our lives changed forever.  I hate that.

That's when I realized just how wounded our hearts have been.  
And how much cancer has crushed us. 

I wish I could tell you that cancer hasn't beaten us down (it has but we always try to get up), or how strong and positive we always are (we're not).  

Even though today was a beautiful day and the grand kids came over -playing in the sun and Terence got a terrific lymphatic massage......cancer never leaves us.....Terence was  outside enjoying some sunshine in his 'zero gravity' lounge watching the kids play, I stepped around the corner to check the sprinkler and I as I rounded the corner coming back- I saw Terence 'hurling chunks' (as he calls it) in my garden.  Three times. Today was the first and last time I forced Terence to eat pineapple.

The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit  (Psalm 34:18)

This journey.  Really hard.  Really tiring.  Really angry.  
  I am so glad we have a "heart doctor" and that He is near when we need Him most.

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart
  (Psalm 73:26 ).



  1. Praying for many of my own memories, I can hear in yours...I know the feeling of first hearing cancer and going through the shock and numbness.... God Bless You for hanging in there...Three years is such a long time of fighting and staying strong in faith. Praying that God's will be done and that your faith is strengthened...

  2. Your posts hit home for those of us living with this devastating disease - thanks for telling it like it is. Praying for you and Terence.

  3. "Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed,yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the Lord, who has compassion on you. Isaiah 54:10