October 20, 2020

The Editor Speaks: Looking back and the Big C

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Colin Wilsonweb2It is time to look back at 2015 and remember the most outstanding personal event (s).

There is only one and it hit both Joan and I.

The BIG C – CANCER!

When I went into hospital in January there was nothing to suggest ‘C’ was back. In fact within days of my recovery from surgery I felt like a brand new pin.

Then that fateful day in February when I got the ‘C’ news after a doctor warning me of the news with a “Wow. Wow. Wow.” There was no bow to the wow wow with that missive.

I still remember vividly the crying Joan and I did briefly in our garden and not suspecting for a second the big ‘C’ would strike her, too.

Putting on a brave face and writing a play that was full of Jesus’ healing hand it was with even more dismay and still hurts more than the illness we both faced, we could not donate the funds raised from this play to the local .

It was a religious play you see and that is poison to the cancer society and the board that purports to be interested in finding a cure for ‘C’. Take your tainted money and give it to someone else was their terrible cry. We have!

At the time of writing this Joan will know more about her cancer when she visits the specialist on Monday.

When it comes to the end of what role should patients play?

Do you forfeit quality of life to gain quantity of life?

British journalist admitted that the impairments he faced had nothing to do with his throat cancer but were instead produced by efforts to cure him of it: a missing lump of tongue, a hole in his throat from a tracheotomy, shooting pains in the neck and jaw, the loss of voice and saliva glands and tastebuds, a limp, edema, overproduction of mucus and saliva, ulcers, a frozen shoulder, toothache, constipation, diarrhea, and radical weight loss. The surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy that inflicted these damages gave him four years of a compromised existence.

Sexual dysfunction and incontinence in prostate cancer survivors underscore a quandary that shadows oncology. As in the above example, procedures that prolong lives also impair them. Yet cancer patients who must forfeit quality of life to gain quantity of life rarely receive adequate warning before treatment or guidance afterward.

I am lucky I suppose as I already went through the first course and this time around I am refusing it.

Joan has facial cancer … or had …. And one of the cures she had almost killed her. She had a dependency on pain medication.

Consider the terrible situation of parents dealing with their children’s leukemia. The high cure rates serve as a wonderful incentive, but caregivers must factor in the possibility that arduous regimens will produce not only nausea and irritability and hair loss and rashes but also secondary cancers, heart disease, stroke, lung problems, bone damage, a decrease in learning ability, and infertility.

Then there is the case of Hannah Meeson of where the child received little help from Cayman’s Cancer Society and her parents reached out to St. Baldrick’s Foundation, a charity dedicated to raising money for childhood cancer research.

Hannah was diagnosed with anaplastic medulloblastoma, a form of brain cancer, in 2012 at age 4. Over the last two years the Cayman public have undergone head-shaving charity events to raise funds for child cancer research.

And to date Hannah has had a clean slate of “no evidence of the disease” after much treatment with medication of the disease.

It would seem if you undergo drastic treatment when you are young it is well worth the agony one must suffer leading up to the cure.

So the big ‘C’ has dominated my life this year.

I look forward to better things for 2016.

And I am going to enjoy my Christmas and make sure you enjoy yours, too.

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