Blankemeyer, Brady – Surviving Mesothelioma

Blankemeyer, Brady

Looking off in the distance not registering what the doctor told me. My mind could not comprehend the meaning to the doctor’s dreadful word of “cancer”. How did I get this, why me?

Then the flood gates open to accusations ranging from radiation from power plants to the time my second grade teacher spanked me. They were all suspects in possible reasons on how I got this. Somehow my body failed to detect this foreign entity and stop it. Curse you body why are you doing this to me; or did I fail you? Was it my health habits, the lack of exercise, or proper eating?

The whole world was crashing around me from just one word. The doctor continued on, like he was rushing to get out. After giving bad news like this, who could blame a person for wanting to do that? Me, that’s who, how could you tell me this? You could have lied and told me everything was fine. Forget the medical ethics just lie to me. That’s it, he’s joking with me and he’ll fess up to it. Options, no that’s not what I wanted to hear from you, as long as it’s not the word; dang he said Chemo.

I heard Chemo and what it can do to people. Not something I want to experience even if I beat them to the punch by already losing my hair. Telling the doctor that I want to think about it, he nods and expresses how sorry he was. He handed a card to me saying to call the number on it, if I wanted to talk to someone for support. Putting the card in my pocket; as I wasn’t ready for that step.

Entering the house I set the 18pack on the living room table. Sitting on the couch I stare at it for 10 minutes. “Drown your sorrows they say,” but I don’t even like the taste of beer. So this was what I wanted to do to try and forget it, by drinking to the bottom of a bottle? Sighing, I push it out of sight and mind preferring to plant myself in front of the computer.

Moving my fingers slowly over the keyboard I eventually type in the word Cancer. Clicking on websites, avoiding the ones for advertisements, I looked up as much information as I could absorb. Finding things on alternative medicine, diets, and cancer fighting food anything that was related to fighting cancer. Burning the pencil on the paper, I took notes and jotting down various doctor numbers I would call for my second to twenty-seventh opinion. I wasn’t ready to accept just one idea, there had to be more options to choose from. Glancing on the top of a website I saw a forum link. Hesitating for a second I clicked on it.

A renewed sense of hope and aw filled me as I read stories from those who had dealt with cancer. The strength they showed when faced with almost impossible odds. I hoped to be like them; no I will be like them. I can do this. Grabbing my cell phone, I knew who I had to call. Fighting back early tears I struggled over each word as I set up a meeting at moms to talk with the whole family. I wasn’t going to tell them yet; it would feel easier face to face.

For the next hour I curled up on the couch. Nothing that I would normally do was appealing. Not watch TV or even playing games. My contentment was a blank stare at the corner of the room where a loose strand of rug stuck out. How easy it was to be that strand of rug, you knew your beginning and accepted whatever end came. I was unsure of my future.

Looking at the clock seeing the designated time was inching closer, I had to get ready to meet them. Not all of them were there yet, so I had to do my best to delay any hints. Hiding emotions was the hardest thing to do; even when mom was probing me on why I was calling everyone here. Beckoning everyone to the living room with their confused wondering faces in tow. I stopped and turned around to face them. Words failed on me as I looked at each of their faces. These were the people I needed to fight for, who would give me strength that I needed. I wanted to be with them, to have them behind me, backing me up as I faced this problem. I closed my eyes, the brain began to speak and the mouth followed. I hoped I could keep opening my eyes and seeing the world for another day.

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