The cancer battle is not only a physical battle. It is mental warfare.
When I was told “you have cancer” my lifestyle framework in that moment was forever changed. Some of the changes have been for the better. But at times, it feels like I am stuck in a concentration camp.
The term concentration camp refers to a camp in which people are detained or confined, usually under harsh conditions.
Cancer can detain or confine. My life’s calendar revolves around my doctors’ appointments. I live trying not to concentrate on cancer between appointments. When it is time to be scanned, tested or to take a dose of chemo, it is hard not to face reality. It is a mental battle to push negative “what if” thoughts out of my brain especially when you see ladies you love lose their physical ability to survive the cancer camp. In those moments of mourning, I privately wonder, when will it be my turn to be called away from the cancer camp?
I cope with the confinement by tunneling my way towards activities that make me feel normal and free of cancer. However routinely, work and fun is interrupted with the news of a new person diagnosed with this dreadful disease or of another person passing from it. Then I feel like the devil is trying to poison my positive energy. I pray. I play. I push negative thoughts away.
Harsh conditions usually exists in concentration camps = Chemo, drugs, tests, side effects, hair loss, and pain – enough said.
I mentally survive the cancer concentration camp because:
1. I trust God.
2. I focus on living life one day at a time.
3. I will not allow the devil to rob me of my joy.
4. I have decided to not just survive but to thrive.
5. I have fun and laugh frequently.
I am a warrior and I am determined to break free from the cancer concentration camp.