Today was a big day for our family. My husband Bill, who has been undergoing cancer treatment at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, got his last radiation treatment today. At Fox Chase, when a patient finishes treatment, he or she gets to ring a bell signifying THE END, while staff members cheer along. I love this. I’ve known people with cancer, but as with most things in life, without experiencing it up close and personal, I didn’t quite grasp the magnitude of treatment. I think Dana Jennings of the New York Times says it best in his blog when he says that cancer is a war between doctors and the disease, and the body is the battleground (Dana’s chronicle of his cancer journey is riveting and well worth the read). Bill endured more pain than I could imagine with hardly a complaint. After going through surgery, two weeks of chemo and six weeks of radiation, he could not wait to ring that bell.
We’ve been away from home for most weeknights during those six weeks so we are thrilled to unpack our suitcases and not have to pack them up again Sunday night. After a tough tax season (thanks IRS!) and an eight day break before Bill’s diagnosis, we’re happy to see the end of “cancer season” and get back to our regular, boring lives. It was nice spending so much time with him- don’t think we’ve ever had this much time together- but maybe we’ll try this again sometime not in a hospital environment LOL. I’m anxious to return to working in my office every day rather than taking the show on the road for half the week and operating out of a hotel room or in the waiting room of the hospital. I can’t say enough good things about Fox Chase- the doctors, nurses, and staff were exceptionally caring and compassionate, and we knew Bill was in not just good hands, but the best. I’ve learned many things during cancer season, not the least of which is that I have the most wonderful clients anyone could ask for. Your prayers, words of encouragement, cards, and even a beautifully crocheted blanket for the infusion room, have been most appreciated and will not be forgotten. I also want to thank Andra Baehr and Lisa Bell, who kept things running smoothly after a crash course in office operations.
It hasn’t been the easiest time in our lives, but I know that God doesn’t waste anything. We’ve seen the fruits of that already, and I know there will be more to come.