Elephants And Tea - December 2019 - 37

NEW OUTLOOK

Dear Cancer,
I met you for the first me when I was seventeen, second semester senior in high school
and months away from graduating. I had heard
whispers about you before; you had met a few of
my family members. One of my grandmothers
had met you too late and paid the ultimate price
and the other had met you just in time and still
suffers today. Before I met you face to face, I felt
you lurking in the background, I wasn't really
sure if it was really you or what my doctor telling
me you were, muscle pain. But sure enough after
a few scans, they found you and I was devastated.
Once I met you face to face, I was afraid
of you, afraid of what you would do to me.
I was also frustrated and furious. Why had
you shown up? What did I do to deserve you?
Will I lose my leg? Will I even survive? As I
thought of these questions, I could hear my
heartbeat as if I was standing next to a speaker
at a concert. The sound was so deafening that
even my tinnitus now wouldn't even compare.
The day after we met, I drove to school and
waited in my car for a few minutes just thinking. Just thinking of what was going to happen.
All of these thoughts that had been swirling
in my mind on repeat. I hadn't realized that
thinking of you made me sob. I just sat there
sobbing alone in my car, envious of the others
on the outside that seemed so carefree. For the
first time in my life, I was truly afraid of dying; I imagined you, a dark scary figure slowly
walking towards me in a dark alleyway in a
slow, suspenseful horror movie way.
A week passed, and I was ready to start
getting rid of you. I felt more optimistic about
what the experience would be like. Your

Dear Cancer...

"I felt more optimistic about what the experience
would be like. Your archenemy, chemotherapy (chemo)
became my best friend for the next eight months."

archenemy, chemotherapy (chemo) became my
best friend for the next eight months. Usually
we would spend the night together and after
all the "fun", the next day would be a horrible
cycle of feeling awful, throwing up, and peeing what felt like a thousand gallons of water.
There were ups and downs, laughs and
cry's but I never forgot what my brother said
to me "This is going to be the hardest thing
you well ever do in your life and it is going to
suck, but you are strong and you can and will
get through it." After that, I focused on the
optimistic side of my journey, so I remember
my time fighting you as mostly fun because
after that, you didn't scare me.
The time I spent with you and chemo in the
hospital, I was missing school and my friends.
It was eye opening to see which people stayed
with me and those who didn't. Along the way
I had lost one of my best friends. At first, I
blamed you for keeping me from her, but
then I realized our friendship had long been
over. How many times I had supported her in
her problems, the second she heard that I was
afraid of dying she left.
But, that's life... there was nothing I could
do about it. I imagine life the waves washing
sand, some things that are meant to wash away

will and some that are strong enough will stay
where they are supposed to be.
As chemo was helping me get rid of you, I
was meeting nurses and doctors that I would be
thankful for meeting. The days that I would be
sitting in the hospital, you brought me closer to
expressing myself through art, learning more
about an industry that I wanted to work in the
future, and understanding my inner self and
what I am capable of.
So...in all honesty I want to thank you. Don't
get me wrong, I still wish I hadn't met you, but
I did, and I can't change that fact. You made
me realize how much I wanted to help people
like me and become a health care professional.
You made me realized how much I had been
neglecting my extended family and now I can
shamelessly say I love and miss them. You made
me realize that whenever something feels impossible, I just have to press on and eventually
I WILL GET THOURGH IT.
You made me realized that having had cancer doesn't necessarily have to be a bad thing.
There are things we can learn from the experience and move on in a positive way.
Another archenemy,
ANIKA SINGH

ELEPHANTSANDTEA.COM
DECEMBER 2019

37


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Elephants And Tea - December 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Elephants And Tea - December 2019

Contents
Elephants And Tea - December 2019 - Cover1
Elephants And Tea - December 2019 - Cover2
Elephants And Tea - December 2019 - 1
Elephants And Tea - December 2019 - Contents
Elephants And Tea - December 2019 - 3
Elephants And Tea - December 2019 - 4
Elephants And Tea - December 2019 - 5
Elephants And Tea - December 2019 - 6
Elephants And Tea - December 2019 - 7
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Elephants And Tea - December 2019 - Cover3
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