Today is the second anniversary of my being diagnosed with esophageal tumor. I remember the shock that I received. For the first 24 hours, I was planning how to make certain that my responsibilities are taken care of.
I was in Georgia and luckily Sudha was with me. After the first 24 hours, my mental state started changing and when in the next week it became clear that my cancer was in very early stage, I became an optimist.
In any case, after chemo-radiation-and surgery I was cancer-free on May 17th. Though most of 2004 was spent in a very weak condition, now I feel much better. In some respects, Cancer did some good things in my life. I started thinking about the life very differently — as something that is precious rather than as a thing to be taken for granted. Until you face death, you think of life differently. In this respect I consider myself lucky to have this encounter.
Another thing that is a valuable lesson is that medical art (or science) has advanced significantly. At one time, cancer was the news of death; no more. Cure may be painful and long (as in my case) but it is there.
One learns the importance of family, friends, and the support system at such trying moments. And I am so lucky to have a wonderful system around me starting with Sudha. 2004 definitely showed me importance of these basic things in my life.
Incidentally, my last check-up about 1.5 months ago showed no signs of cancer. I still feel somewhat weak, but mostly I feel better than I used to in 2003.
This cancer survivor definitely loves life and wants to make good and enjoyable use of what is offered to me.