An Enemy Within?

Beltane                                                                           Closing Moon

No longer the same terrifying monster that stalked through my childhood and adult years, cancer yet demands careful attention. And, it kills.

No longer hypothetical for me, but a fact. Inside my own body, lodged in the core, lies a strawberry sized organ (mine’s a bit bigger) that now carries the seeds of my own apocalypse. I imagined I would feel my body had betrayed me, but no. Instead, if I understand it correctly, some of my cells have reached for that long held human fantasy of immortality. Oddly, if those cells reach their goal they will end their dream and me.

Yesterday I felt stunned when Ana, Dr. Eigner’s physician’s assistant, told me I had a positive biopsy for prostate cancer. So much so that her next words about the Gleason score came in my ears, rattled around hunting for understanding and failed. Later, in the book Eigner recommended, How to Survive Prostate Cancer by Patrick Walsh, they fell into place.

Cancer was what I had expected, given my PSA, the digital exam of both Dr. Gidday and Dr. Eigner and my family history. Dad’s prostate cancer at age 65. And, survival until age 89. Even so, the movement from hypothetical to real caused a reeling sensation that momentarily scrambled my thoughts.

Slept fine last night though there was, before I could get to sleep, a small fiery knot in my lower abdomen, a signal that I had unacknowledged fears. Through a trick I learned from either Carl Rogers or gestalt psychology I let this fiery knot speak to me. It spoke not in words as sometimes happens, but in a release of tension. Those fears needed acceptance, not repression. After that, sleep came and my dreams were usual.

On June 11th Kate and I will see Eigner for a long consult on what treatment option to take. After taking into account the pieces of information I have now and calculating that I have over fifteen years to live, I imagine radical prostatectomy, complete removal of the prostate, will be my choice.

Next up. Echocardiogram. Gosh.

 

 

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