A cancer diagnosis is terrible for everyone, but as a mother it is just that and more! As a mother it is our nature and instinct to care for and put everyone else’s needs before our own. So of course one of the first things that will come to our mind after being given the diagnosis is how will be able to do all of the things we need to for those we love and second how will we inform our children of the news without worrying or scaring them. It is important for children to know how serious the situation is that the family will now be facing and to understand mom needs their extra help as she get better. The fear of what to come and how we will appear to our children is also huge. What will they think when my hair starts falling out, after treatments and I feel horrible, will they understand this is only temporary. The fears are endless. But as a mother who has experienced all of these things I can say that my 3 year old was my biggest supporter. When I was shaving my hair and balling she walked in with my wig and said, it’s ok mommy now you can wear your pretty new hair! She went to every appointment and treatment. She was never scared but instead there to tell me it will be ok and make me smile! For the older kids I assumed they would be on their best behavior knowing what I was facing. But from day one my goal was not to appear sick or allow my kids to see me at my worst. So I did my best to do just that. After a very stressful summer of my children not being here for me the way I kind of expected I questioned if they really realized just how serious things were. I didn’t explain to them everything to them or what I was going through so that they wouldn’t worry. I also acted and looked as normal as I could for the most part. Now I look back and think that I went about things the wrong way. A little worrying may have saved me from my emotional breakdowns that I had because of their choices and them taking advantage of me not having the energy to keep up. I now feel that if I was ever to be in this situation again that the older ones I would explain more into detail just exactly the hell I am facing. I wouldn’t always pretend to be ok. I wouldn’t hide my fears or even all my tears. I would allow them to see some of that so that maybe it would actually make an impact on them. And maybe they would have more compassion and understanding. I can not blame my kids for not changing the way they behave and continuing to act as everything is normal when that is what I have done the whole time. Hiding the truth to protect them is not always the best for a situation like this!! I learned the hard way!
I feel so many use things for sympathy these days not necessarily cancer but everyone has their own battle they’re fighting. Everyone is struggling with something so my main goal to not appear sick was also part of my goal to inspire others to keep fighting their fight and not to give up. To show with the right attitude we can do whatever we have to to win! I have just tried my best to stay positive. With that said it is much easier when asked how everything is to just leave it as good.
My Grandma also died from cancer. She fought her battle when the red devil was still experimental. My grandpa gets very emotional even to this day telling about the hell she went through. I wanted nothing about me and my battle to bring back those horrific memories. Staying strong is all I know. It is what I was born to do. I am more worried about those around me than myself but as far as the children go hiding every single thing that could scare them wasnt tge best choice. A little fear may have been enough for them to be better behaved and not test my sanity during this time.