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I couldn't even bring myself to lift the pen, to open a notepad or to even consider writing. I know this feeling all too well. I feel like I have in the past: a lack of interest, motivation, or maybe inspiration. It hasn’t just affected my body now, this cancer has affected my mind— correction, this chemo, in essence a poison.
“My daughter’s refusing chemo because of the poison toxins that she does not want in her body... this is her human right… to not put poison in her body,” said Jackie Fortin, her mother, in a statement to press. “Her rights have been taken away; she has been forced to put chemo in her body right now as we speak.”
I sat in awe reading this, shocked that someone so young could refuse life. Especially when the success rate in treating Hodgkins is so high. What would I do if I was that parent?
If I raised my daughter to feel independent, empowered and opinionated, then one day she mirrored my diagnosis? What if she chose death? Could I, having supported her through her infancy, childhood and youth, continue to do so under these circumstances? And if my answer was no, could I face her?
There is so much more to this story than I’m sure any of us, even I, could understand. The bond between mother and daughter can be one that stands firm even in the face of death. Upon reading an interview and seeing the mother’s face it is evident there is pain. This mother proving her love and loyalty to her child at such a high price, is heartbreaking. Watching news reports and social media updates is disheartening, seeing the public’s comments much like gauging my eyes out. For me, because I sit here in her shoes, having once also said that in my youth but only having to face it as an adult. A parent. The other side of the coin, one where I refuse to leave behind my own children.
Treatment, however “easy” the Cancer may be… is not easy. Chemo for this is just as potent as it is for any other. With just as many long term side effects. So, while I can not answer even my own questions, I do know that I will reserve judgement because its not just black and white. Simply because there are days I can't sleep through the night, mornings I can't stand to smell…ANYTHING, and times when I struggle to formulate sentences. Today, after treatment and since my pain medications have worn off, I feel a sense of clarity, one I refuse to take for granted.
So I am here, sharing my thoughts before I attempt once more to sleep, in the fetal position so my body aches less and warms easier. One last thing… “If you do not know, shhhhh.”