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Don’t call me a survivor

If all goes well, later this week, after two years of treatment for Stage 4 cancer and over three years since my initial diagnosis, I will have the final treatment of my clinical trial. If all goes well, my scans will say that I'm still cancer free, that my drug regimen has worked beyond all expectations. For all this, I'm exceedingly grateful. I'm proud. But don't tell me how to be happy about it.

Of course I'm humbled and awed and frequently joyful for the gift of not being dead, especially since not so long ago the odds were so much against me. I've been part of a groundbreaking medical miracle.  I have learned so much in the past few years – deepened important relationships and made extraordinary new ones. I believe it's made me a more loving, devoted, present person. And I'm also thoroughly traumatized by the whole experience. That's part of it too – a big part, in fact.

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