Velazquez, Lizeth – Surviving Mesothelioma

Velazquez, Lizeth

Carpe Diem

Carpe Diem, Seize the day. Growing up you always dream of getting older, getting married and getting old with that person. What would happen if your life was cut short because of a strong and aggressive cancer? For me the only word in my vocabulary would be “fight.” I would want to fight against all odds and try to survive for as long as I could. That is just what Mr. Rhio O’Connor did, he fought to live. When Mr. O’Connor was diagnosed with Mesothelioma cancer he was given only one year to live. But with his fight to survive and dedication to live he outlived the prognosis by more than six years. Mr. O’Connor is an inspiration to me because he was able to fight his cancer with a good attitude towards living and surpassing his prognosis with his dedication to live.

Mesothelioma cancer is a cancer that is caused by a mineral called asbestos. Many of the asbestos workers get it from the exposure they get when working with asbestos; there have been studies that have shown that even if you have exposure to asbestos for at least two months it could still lead to Mesothelioma Cancer later in life. The cancer lives in the lining of the lung which also causes small malignous tumors; it is also a very aggressive type of cancer. Many times when it is found that a person has Mesothelioma cancer it is usually in the last stage which can most times be deadly and incurable. When someone is told that they have cancer the first thing they think is that they will not live for a long time and that they will die soon. Mr. O’Conner didn’t give up the day he got the diagnoses that he only had six months to live, instead Mr. O’Conner decided to do research and learn about Mesothelioma cancer so he can make an informed decision about his treatment options. In my opinion researching the disease is the best thing anyone could do. Sometimes we ourselves have to become our own doctors because we know our body better than anyone else. By learning about the disease we have, we can make decisions on the best treatment for our body and our soul.

If I was in Mr. O’Conner’s situation I would also fight to live. I would only be able to make an informed decision if I knew what was happing in my body, so I would take myself to the nearest library and learn about the ways I would be able to treat my disease. I would start out by learning what the cancer meant and what if was doing to my body, then I would research the different treatment doctors recommend. I would also try to find out the different side effects certain treatments had and how they would impact my body in the future. For example Chemotherapy is usually recommended to help treat cancer, but chemotherapy has many ugly side effects like vomiting and dizziness, even losing your hair. I would try to talk to different doctors and get second, third and even fourth opinions on what I could do to treat my cancer. Then I would take that into considerations and to make the best choice.

People sometimes forget that family and friends is what keeps us alive. I would get my family and make sure they supported me every step of the way. I would also talk to my family about what was happening with the treatment options with the cancer and find ways to get them involved with the treatment. Having my family in my live would help me feel cared about and that they loved me, it would give me an attitude towards living, and on wanting to fight against the odds. Having my friends around is what helps me stay sane, but I don’t think it would be easy to talk to them about my cancer because it could be hard to understand. So I would try to find a support group with people going through the same situation I’m going through. I would have new friends that would help me live, because they would know how I would be feeling at the time and they would be able to relate to things happening in my life at the time.

Sometimes the standard treatment or going through chemotherapy are not all that helpful, I believe that we have to be in touch with our inner spirit so we can feel good about fighting the cancer. I would not only do chemotherapy but I would also try to do some spiritual healing at the same time. In my point of view having our mind and soul in a healthy condition helps us surpass any situation given to us. It helps us have the power to live and survive. A way to keep our mind at ease with a situation could come from walking daily to keep the nerves down and even with meditation to help relieve any negativity we are feeling. I fell that alternative medicine can also be a good choice.

Finding out you have cancer is maybe one of the hardest things people may face, but I feel the way we deal with the cancer is what determines the outcome of the situation. Being well informed is what counts in the decisions we may make about our treatment. Sometimes we may only look at the internal medicine but I believe that alternative medicine like meditation is another thing that could help us surpass the situation. Never giving up and living the best way we can is what counts.

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