Upon Entering Another Year

January is a month after all the holiday celebrations, gatherings, and vacations. But for me, this marks the start of my fifth year taking the same TKI for my type of lung cancer.

Every year, I am reminded how life can change in a second. As I go through each new year, I reflect on how I went through my previous year. I must learn from the past.

Facing my fears

I agree that fear changes reality. Having lived with lung cancer for many years, I have struggled to conquer my fears.

What will happen to me once recurrence occurs? Will I experience more treatment toxicities? Do I change treatment? Will there be treatment options available for me?

I cannot stand still in fear but take my sovereign God's hand, who will deliver me from all my fears.

Finding support

Since diagnosis, I have been keeping abreast of lung cancer information and resources. Albert Einstein once said, "When you stop learning, you start dying." I think this is true.

Finding time to understand my lung cancer types, stages, symptoms, causes, treatment, side effects, survival rates, and tests. So many lung cancer groups offer proper information and online support to patients and survivors. Finding one or more that is suitable to my needs is vital to my survivorship.

Conserving my energy

Lingering tiredness is common in people with lung cancer. I tend to pace myself throughout the day.

A short nap is part of my daily routine. Activities that are highly positive for my energy are a priority.

I do light movements and eat well-balanced meals. Of course, I ask for help from my loved ones or close friends when needed. Overdoing is not in my vocabulary anymore.

Living my best life

Anxiety is one common negative emotion while being treated with lung cancer. Loss of control of this emotion can affect my quality of life.

Most mindful activities like meditation and yoga are my go-to for relief. There are different breathing and relaxation techniques available online that helps deal with my anxiety.

With the many selections available, what works for me is my normal choice. Another option is music as a soothing way to divert the negative emotion.

The diagnosis of my lung cancer has brought me more realization on the brevity of life. One of the most fulfilling things is spending quality time with my family and close kin.

I give my best with the time I have to show them all my love and care physically and remotely. God has blessed me with a grandson, and another one is coming soon. Though they are far from where I live, I am thankful for Facetime.

Being a long-term cancer survivor

To each his own on how to adjust as a cancer survivor. Since diagnosis, I have a greater appreciation of my life, a better understanding of what is important, and stronger spiritual beliefs.

I hope to always have a good quality of life.

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