Good friends via Caring Bridge - its a new year and I have good news. Just before Christmas my latest PET scan and Brain MRI show that the targeted treatment continues to hold back the lung cancer. There are no new spots! In 6 months, barring any new symptoms arising sooner, this regimen will be repeated.
Since last March when I first learned lung cancer had metastasized in my body and into the bones and brain, I resolved to live more gratefully each day. It seemed the only suitable response to my forced awareness of the miracle of being alive in the first place. I am not always successful at this mindful living, however. For inspiration I look to my dog, Elle, who lives constantly in the here and now. Of course, I look to God, too! You expected me to say that, right? You inspire me, too!
2018 reminded me in a new, more personal way, of the beauty and fragility of life. It also makes me wonder if this becomes more evident to those who live with a terminal diagnosis? I think the answer is yes.
Once in awhile, pop culture comes up with a way to reveal the nature of living in the now. In "Groundhog Day," Bill Murray's character has to repeat the same day over and over. His redemption story concludes with Murray evolved into a wise man, capable of love, delivering this epiphany: "No matter what happened before or happens after, I'm happy now."
I figure the best I can do, regardless of the world's uncertainties big and small, is emulate that attitude. No matter how grateful I am to a targeted therapy for the chance to live longer, I am determined not to take another moment on time's continuum for granted. As an extension, I've promised myself to make some positive contribution to the future every day and that has brought some notable delights.
As I think of 2019 and coming to the first anniversary of this diagnosis and the start of the second of the two years my oncologist hopes I get out of the current treatment, I know there will be joy and beautify no matter what happened before or happens after. I will recognize the experience for what it is — a gift of bonus time, an argument for being grateful and happy now.
Wishing you and yours the delights of making a difference in this world every day. Thanks for reading my post.