Eric: I found a blog you might like, I'll post it on facebook.
Me: yeah, mumble, mumble
It's not that I don't LIKE other blogs. I usually love them. The knowledge though that there are sooooo many other cancer blogs bums me out, to be honest. But I said I would check it out, so I did.
Wow. You should check it out too: Secrets of Cancerhood
So many things the author wrote resonate with me. One topic really spoke to me, guilt and cancer. I know what you're thinking. I think it too. Why should I feel guilty? Cancer wasn't my fault, at least as far as we can tell.
But I do. At times the guilt is overwhelming. I don't even know where to begin, so I'll just jump into the deep end. I have horrible guilty feelings that I might die and leave my children without a mother. Eric without a wife and partner. They don't deserve that. I don't dwell on this constantly, but it pops into my head from time to time. Cancer is very unforgiving and just plain mean. I know this is a possibility. And yet when I think about it, there's no way I regret the kids or Eric. The world is a better place with Reese and Eli in it, for sure.
I feel guilty that I can't even take care of myself sometimes (okay, most times) on chemo weekends. What if it gets worse? I feel guilty that Eric has to pack my butt wound every day, even though he says he doesn't mind. I feel guilty that I won't feel good enough to go to the church family outing this Friday because of treatment. I feel guilty that Eli had a very small cupcake party instead of a super cool birthday party because his birthday fell on a chemo weekend. I feel guilty that talking about cancer makes Reese feel sad. I feel guilty when I know these thoughts and feelings will make others sad. I feel guilty that I can't just be normal. I even feel guilty when someone else dies and I'm still alive.
It's just one big ball of guilt, guys.
Rationally, I know these things aren't MY fault. I didn't go seeking cancer, inviting it into my world. I can't help what the treatments do to me. I get it, I really do. Yet there it is. The guilt.
So what do I do to combat it? I try to be gentle with myself. I try to remember that I need to share with others what I'm going through so they can minister to me and my family. I love on Eric and the kids as much as possible. I pray for strength and courage and faith. I try to think about and care for other people when I can.
If you have time, check out the blog I posted, and find her writings about guilt. She's wise.
Pray for my family and me as we walk this difficult walk.
Philippians 4:13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.