You Think You Feel Bad?

One of my friends has Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. She is running out of the boundless energy she once seemed filled with. Three months ago, when last I saw her, she was going to conquer this, and I didn't doubt it.

The cancer spread to her brain, I found out a little later, and eventually starting compressing the ventricular system which is now shunted away to the abdomen. Headaches? Her funny, sharp, brilliant brain literally IS exploding with malignant tissue in permanant blastosis. You have no idea. She can no longer connect the thoughts she thinks to the words she wants to say, and this is frustrating her, making her angry.

The cancer is in her blood. When she is on chemo she is so immuno-suppressed she cannot have many visitors. She went home for a few days and was scratched by her dog. She was hospitalised for two weeks, battling septicemia.


She used to come to this blog, once upon a time. It was her naughty secret.

But she only came because she really wanted to read SPG (who later became MissIzzy). She'd link through me because she did not want those salacious URLs in her typing history!


There's nothing to say, no point saying or being sorry. Sorry about what, its' not your fault? It's not her fault? No-one is to blame.

One of our colleagues, Q, tried to see her last week.

"What do I say to her?" she asked me.

"Tell her about how hard it was doing that demo yesterday." I suggested. "Tell her how you know she would have had managed it easily, because she is so knowlegdable and confident. And pass on my best wishes."

But Q could not get close. She was unable to accept visitors as she was in too much pain, though Q could see her in the distance on the bed, curled up like a fetus.

She has always been small, a tiny pocket-rocket Chinese dynamo, who bought her casual clothes in the children's section.

"She really looked the size of small child," said Q in her SMS to me.



Posted by: expat@large on Mar 05, 07 | 4:55 pm | Profile


it sucks to know in this day and age, a more humane way of treating cancer still hasn't been found. my mum's good friend recently lost her 2 year battle to cancer. it was painful hearing what she had to go through too, from my mum. I hope your friend survives this.

Posted by: The Ivy on Mar 06, 07 | 10:08 am

The movie you don't want to watch if you have cancaer is Wit - starring Emma Thompson.

I am part of this giant medical machine... objectivity, rationality, but unfortunately not as much real science as you might have thought. However is there is another myth, that if you just left people with cancer alone they would die peacefully at home, and that it is the medical treatment that is causing all this pain and sickness. That' a long way from the truth. Untreated cancer can torture you, debilitate you and kill you much more painfully and in more dehumanizing ways than the treatments we have. It's just that the treatments inevitably do cause damage as well.

I could tell you stories...

Posted by: expat@large on Mar 06, 07 | 3:58 pm

Unfortunately she is terminal...

Posted by: expat@large on Mar 06, 07 | 3:59 pm

terminal cancer is like a death sentence. i might be repeating myself - but this sucks.

Posted by: The Ivy on Mar 06, 07 | 5:15 pm

terminal = end

Posted by: expat@large on Mar 06, 07 | 7:48 pm


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