My year of cancer: Part III The things you learn along the way

Monday, October 22, 2012

Kindle Carpp is a 2000 graduate of Shorewood High School. In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, she shares her story.

By Kindle Carpp

“The things you learn along the way”

Cancer is expensive. Not just the treatments but the time off of work.

Cancer bills are twice the fun of cancer but without any glory or swag. The cost hits you when you can least afford it. You have taken the time off work to get well, spent loads of money for the co-pays, you are just getting back to work and then the bills hit you over the head. They add insult to injury and rub salt in your wounds.

There are grants, groups and charities out there but you have to ask. There will be a financial assistance office at your clinic/hospital; go there right away. Have tax statements, bills that you pay, and check stubs in order to prove your debt to income ratio so you can ask for financial assistance. Don't wait until you have to choose between paying a bill and eating. Ask for help before you need it because under the best of circumstances cancer is tragically expensive.

You learn that you do not have time for the stuff that is not important.

You learn what is important.

You will learn how to throw up well and with skill.

I can now tell several minutes before I am going to vomit, can put away whatever I am doing, calmly walk down the hall, vomit and move on with extreme class.

Start a blog or something similar to keep people up to date.

It is a lot of work to keep that blog up to date but it is more stress and energy to constantly be giving out the same information and address the same stressful questions over and over. It also means your audience can read on their time, not yours.

Sometimes your friends and family make harsh comments or ask intrusive questions.

Some people are just rude so there's no accounting for the outliers. In most cases they do not mean to be rude. People are curious and they don't know it is a sore subject. Forgive them because they probably do not know what it is like to be the one on the other side of that question or comment. By telling people about your situation and empowering yourself to talk about it you get lots of questions and comments.

Cancer happens like everything happens. Sometimes you do something and there is a consequence, and sometimes the thing you do is living and cancer is the consequence of being alive.

Other articles in this series:


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