The time after cancer treatment isn’t something people tend to write about. Or at least I’ve not found much about it. I know that everyone is different and maybe some people, once they get through it, just want to put it behind them and not think about it any more. But for me, and for several people I’ve talked to over the last year, it’s maybe as hard as actually going through treatment. Just in a different way.
When I was going through treatment I was DOING something about my cancer. I was actively fighting. Afterward, I felt like I was just sitting around waiting for the next test or doctor appointment. Waiting around for someone to tell me that I was “all done” so I could move on. Which STILL hasn’t happened.
It probably doesn’t help that just a tiny bit over a month after I finished treatment my mother found herself fighting for her life with her own very serious cancer battle. Then my youngest child graduated from college and moved 1007 miles away. And then another child got married and I became an instant GRANDMOTHER! The nest became completely and totally empty.
Empty nest, extended family issues due that resurfaced during my mothers illness, cancer, life. Oh yeah, and let’s not forget the 50th birthday just a few days before my 1 year end-of-treatment anniversary. And fatigue the size of Texas. It all seemed pretty BIG.
So I’m here to tell you. If you are fighting the good fight be prepared for some strong feelings and emotions to surface once you are through treatment. Take time, take care of yourself and be extra gentle. Find someone to talk to who has also been through cancer if you can. Or find a therapist. At the very least journal it out. It did help me to process my feelings when I shared them with someone else.
Do things that feed your soul. I started kayaking and hiking and it made all of the difference in the world for me to be out in nature. I started doing some energy work and became an Earth Energy master and a Reiki level 2. I started going to Weight Watchers so I could feel like I was doing something for my health again and I made myself get back in my studio even though it was really hard at first.
Take care of yourself after treatment. Don’t let anyone rush you though healing – both physically or emotionally. Hey, maybe you won’t have any trouble at all, but if you do, know you aren’t alone and I’m here for ya.