Radiation Therapy

                                                                               Everyday is a brand new day,
                                                                                  everyday is a journey.

Drop thy still dews of quietness
till all our strivings cease.
Take from our souls the strain
and stress and let our ordered
lives confess the beauty
of thy peace.
J.G. Whittier

Of all the treatment I ever had, I hated radiation the most. Yet, it was this treatment, plus the surgery that has made it possible for me to be in remission and no scans until next year. We ponder. What exactly is radiation? How does it work? How harmful is it really?

ra·di·a·tion ther·a·py

ˌrādēˈāSHən ˈTHerəpē/
noun: radiation treatment
  1. the treatment of disease, especially cancer, using X-rays or similar forms of radiation.

Radiation, as explained to me by the nurse, works best on a daily basis. The cancer is attacked in the same way as when one pops popcorn. As the corns are heated, they explode pop, pop, pop attacking the cancer in bombardment. That's why it has to happen in fast repetition, therefore five weeks or so of daily radiation. 

Unlike chemotherapy, where the infusion is flushed out by drinking lots of fluids, radiation is like a wave that disperses into the body. One has radiation once a day, Monday through Friday for up to fives weeks or less. The process itself does not hurt, but the side effects from it can be difficult and unpleasant to say the least. I'm being nice here. 

I hated radiation, absolutely hated it. I find it to be extremely demoralizing to me. Not by the clinical staff, but the process. To stand in front of a mirror and look at the black marker emphasizing the area where the radiation will take place, was emotionally draining to me. I felt so exposed as if everyone could see all my scars, both emotional as well as physical. I could not runaway. I could not cover them up like before. I had to deal with them. And I didn't want to. 

Even now, almost a year has passed and I still shudder at the memories. Radiation broke me. A cleansing of the soul occurred like never before with the other three times I had a re-occurrence. You have no idea how happy I am that I don't need to go back for a scan until next year. Anything to do with doctors, brings back all these feelings once again. 

I think I'm just tired. It's been ten years. Ten years of doctors every three months. Ten years and four re-occurrences. That's a lot for anyone. I need a break.

Have a blessed day everyone.


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