Odds Schmods, My Brother Said When I Told Him

Apr 6, 2011 by

Hey, remember when I had cancer?


I posted the news on Facebook last night, and the cheers have been pouring in ever since. So forgive me if the writing of this blog post is blurred by my happy, happy tears.

This is a picture of the boys in the waiting room yesterday. It goes out to all their teachers and former teachers, their aunt who was a reading specialist, Marilyn Goodwin, and anyone else who sees three BOYS reading and would join me in saying, “Michael, get your camera out NOW.” It’s also for God. Thanks for somehow protecting them from fear enough – or maybe for giving them enough courage over fear – that Harry Potter still rocks at a cancer clinic.

You’ve met Dr. Rosenthal, the sarcoma specialist I’ve followed with since my initial diagnosis. But my chemo specialist is Dr. Myron. My paragraphs in the memoir on Dr. Myron are less than – well – Rosenthalish. He barely said hello or goodbye and not much more than that in between. I remember a line that went something like, “We sat in silence for what seemed like hours as he read my chart and scraped his highlighter across the minute details of my life…” My description of that first visit was repeated almost to the LETTER the first time we met with him this go ’round too. As Mom is my witness.

But he became much more friendly after several visits, even complimenting my boots once. And yesterday, he was golden. He laughed and smiled. He remembered my brother’s name. I swear to you. (It’s because we like to tell it as a joke…”Felicity, Serenity, Charity….And Joe.” But still, I was impressed. Sometimes people remember the joke but fill in the blank with Frank or Fred or anything to sorta fit the bill.)

And of course there was the whole Telling Me I’m Cancer-Free Again Goodbye Sarcoma thing. That helped.

He told me one uncool thing about my odds (see title). Of course, I’m used to hearing uncool when it comes to my cancer. But apparently about half of the synovial cell sarcoma patients who recur at some point with a nodule or two in their lungs, as I did, will recur again. Which means that half of them DON’T.  Which in my mind puts me square in the who-the-heck-knows category which is right where we all are really when it comes to the good and bad of life. And that’s why I really, REALLY loved the last thing Dr. Myron said.

Enjoy every day.

In the words of Anne – kindred spirits aren’t nearly so scarce as I used to think.

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  1. Ah, those boys are so awesome. My hospital experiences in the last 8 years have ingrained one truth in my heart: thank God for the people who sacrificed years and years of their lives to learn how the heck to help sick people (especially tiny babies or sisters with cancer). Thank God.

  2. YEAH!!!!!! And oh, I’m so glad Dr. Myron turned out to be a kindred spirit after all. “It’s splendid to find out there are so many of them in the world.”

  3. YAY!!!! :) That is all.

  4. I didn’t realize we had both cancer AND 3 boys in common. :) I used to feel like I had this awful shadow hanging over me. The dr’s statement that I have 3x higher chance of getting breast cancer than most women because of my type of cervical cancer was like a harbinger of doom breathing down my neck.

    And then I realized God had granted my prayer and given me enough time to raise my children. And I wasn’t going to spend that time huddled in fear that one day I’d have to hear another doctor say those words “You have cancer.”

    What kind of life is that?

    So, instead, I started writing books, starting making new friends, and kept building relationships with my kids and my husband. I’m so glad to see you do the same. Praise God that you are well again!!

  5. Serenity

    The strangest thing for me, C, is that I was always such a fearful person. Always scared of what bad thing could happen next. It is still a shadow, but I don’t fear it like I used to – for the exact same reason. That’s just no way to live.

  6. Hooray for healthy bodies, reading boys, doctors with a human side, and kindred spirits. xoxo

  7. I hadn’t cried yet. Thanks a lot.

  8. Cute little boys! And what a happy post.

  9. Judy Harvey

    Serenity, I have happy tears in my eyes now. I also must say, as someone who went to the funeral of a bright, funny, outstanding 16-year-old student who was in a car accident a few short weeks ago, we all must enjoy every day. It is the best tribute to those who have gone on before us, and it will make our lives richer!

  10. Valinda

    LOVE LOVE LOVE this one!!!! So proud of those boys reading and so happy for the amazing news!!! Your positive attitude and outlook are contagious and I just know good things are ahead!!
    Love and Hugs!!

  11. Danette Dodson Nickell

    So thankful and happy for you and your family Serenity! You have been in my thoughts and prayers for months now …… (as soon as I had stumbled on to your mom’s blog) and now am a faithful reader of all of the “Nickerson” ladies blogs. All four of you are such an inspiration. God does answer prayers. (((Hugs))) to you and your family! Sincerely, Danette (Dodson) Nickell

  12. Sara

    Fabulous! I love this post, AND all its comments! And as a “picture person,” I just love this pic. Jared is now on the 3rd Harry Potter and last night he was listing for me his friends who are also reading HP, and which one each of them is reading (he’s very analytical)- Drew was in the list but I can’t remember what # he said. Anyway, just a little bit of trivia…
    Love ya!

  13. Well doesn’t THIS have awesome written all over it. I believe I’ve just found the “awesome” in my day, as I instructed my FB/Twitter friends. wahoooo!!
    I so love those reading Bohon boys!

  14. YOU DON’T HAVE CANCER!!! This is the happiest news I’ve heard in a long, long time.

  15. Serenity

    Oh you wonderful blog readers. Thanks for celebrating with me!

  16. Tina

    That pic is GREAT! I just told Lane the other day, as Micheal was loading his two ceiling height bookshelves up with his collection’s of knowledge, that I have scarcely met anyone worth hanging out with that wasn’t a reader. Speaking of awesome boys…I heard I missed some exciting basketball yesterday. Micheal said he enjoyed seeing you guys and when I inquired how you were he indicated that you looked “radiant”…so there. =) I have a happy in my heart for you and your’s Miss Serenity! God Bless and P.S….“Every man dies – Not every man really lives.”

  17. Jessica

    I love your title here. I think more people should live this way, no fear, just the positive in life, that we GET to LIVE, no matter how long, how short, how good or how bad, God allows us to live, and I am so happy you are living and going to live so much more, a beautiful life Seren!

  18. Serenity

    I felt kind of radiant, Tina. It’s still so nice to get out among people since I spent so much time the beginning of this year not doing that. :)

    And Jessica, I couldn’t have said it better.

  19. Mindy

    Love those boys!! And the most wonderful news in the WORLD!!