My Journey with NHL

On November 6, 2007, I was told that I have cancer.  Those words have an immediate and dramatic impact on anyone’s life and some choose to keep that diagnosis and the journey ahead private.  I’ve chosen to share my story and I hope that it will be enlightening for some, just as sharing my story is cathartic for me.  The support that I’ve received from friends and family around the world has been overwhelming and I offer this blog for those who want to share my journey with me.

My initial blog appeared on my web site and began with a quote from Dante:

Midway along the journey of our life, I awoke to find myself in a dark wood.

As a child, I loved “The Wizard of Oz”, but I was always most afraid of the scene where Dorothy enters the woods and the apple trees begin to throw their apples at her.  Many have asked why that scene was the most scary to me and I suppose that it’s because you don’t expect apple trees to behave like that.  You expect green witches to be mean and, frankly, I’d be pretty suspicious of flying monkeys but, you don’t expect an apple tree to throw it’s apples at you!

I have always been very healthy.  I’m active, I eat well and I take care of myself.  For my body to throw something like this at me, midway through my life, has come as a big surprise.  So, like Dorothy, I entered the woods, with good friends at my side and visions of poppies on the other side of the woods.

Throughout the last year, I battled cancer; first with Rituxan, then R-CVP and finally surgery in October 2008 to remove the tumor in my stomach.  The cancer is now gone and I find myself in a field of poppies, but the yellow brick road doesn’t end here.  There’s a long road of healing and recovery ahead….

10 thoughts on “My Journey with NHL

  1. You have set up a very nice blog and the best of attitudes. I am at having this romance with cancer, will start my second round of chemo on the 27 three days in house treatment. So far so good but then i still have hairrl

    Take care

    Marktwain

  2. Hi,

    I have recently diagnosed with NH-Lymphoma. I am 34 years old and as I read your blog, I realized that we have some similarities. I take care myself very well, never eat fat food and … and then this happened to me.
    Anyway, very soon I will have my 1st chemo. Please let me know how are you feeling now and any recommendation that helps are more than welcome.

    Thanks.

  3. Dear Kash,

    Thank you for your post on my blog. If you have any questions or just need someone to talk to, I hope that you’ll stay in touch.

    What kind of NHL do you have? Aggressive or Indolent? What kind of chemo will you be getting? The good news is that they’ve made incredible strides in treating cancer…and in making those treatments tolerable! I’ve found my journey with cancer to be fascinating and there are lots of great resources out there for you.

    My advice…

    Keep a positive attitude. Think like a survivor. Savor each day and make the most of it.

    Start a blog. Some people want to keep their diagnosis private and that’s great. We all need to take this journey on our own terms. I’ve found blogging to be great way to keep friends and family up-to-date on my progress. It’s also been a great emotional outlet for me and it’s given me a chance to help many others, like yourself, who have been diagnosed with cancer.

    You will need to be you own advocate in the health care system. At a time in your life when you really need others looking out for you, sadly, the person best equipped to do that is you. Educate yourself. There are great resources out there and so many cancer survivors ready to give you support. You hear it said many times, and it really is true, cancer survivors form a very close community and no one will understand what you’re going through like another cancer survivor.

    If you don’t have it yet, Living with Lymphoma by Elizabeth Adler is a great book for those diagnosed with lymphoma. The NHL Cyberfamily, http://www.nhlcyberfamily.org/, is another great source of information as well as a support network of other NHL survivors. There are many other great sites online, some listed in my blogroll.

    I wish you well on your journey with NHL. Please stay in touch!!!

  4. Hello Carrie:

    My name is Tina and we have a mutual friend “K” from Beagle World group. K sent me to your blog- very nice! I was diagnosed with stage IV colon caner in January 2006- had surgery and six months of intraperitoneal chemo. I was NED for a year but on a trip to the Holy Land, I started with a nasty respiratory infection that would not leave. Turns out it was METS to liver and lung. That was last fall and I have been on chemo ever since – no end in sight. My CEA is low and my scan results have been very good for the past six months. I have faith in God to heal me and preserve me.

    I own a beagle named Bo. He is four years old and the love of my life (don’t tell hubby or kids). He has been a faithful companion during this cancer journey.

    May you be well and happy. Bless you!
    Tina in MI

  5. HI – Your blog is inspirational, My husband has a rare and currently, not curable, form of NHL – his lifestyle has always been similar to what you describe yours as – he recently added Quercitin to his daily nutritional supplement regime and I was wondering if you had any additional input on this?

    Linda

  6. Hi:

    I am also receiving chemo but it is a little different for me as my husband and I are stationed in Germany, so my care has taken on a new dimension as I try to learn German. I was recently diagnosed with NHL (B-cell), aggressive. I am confident that I will beat this and I was very happy to find your blog as other websites that I looked at just started to depress me.

  7. Hi. I have NHL Mediastinal Large B Cell diffused. The prognosis is good, but am freaking out at 3am in the morning as I await results from first PET scan after first 3 cycles of chemo. I probably shouldn’t have spent the last hour reading a blog of a girl who died from the same disease. Same disease, different treatment, different individual…i know i know…

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