The Waiting Game
I’ve seen it said many times that the waiting is the hardest part. I’ve never felt this to be so true as when waiting for cancer scan results, staging or treatment plans.
I always assumed that if you have cancer that everything moved very quickly once it was discovered. By god was I wrong! In my case, they biopsied a tumour and I got asked to attend the hospital 2 weeks later to see a doctor about the results.
It was at that meeting I was told I had cancer. Then, there was more waiting! So you’re told you have cancer and then it was a case of waiting for scans to be booked, results to come in and a treatment plan to be put together. All in all this took around a month. So one month after being told I had cancer, I finally had a treatment plan ready to start. Crazy!
Now those weeks of waiting were hard, torturous at times. But if you can detach yourself from it and realise that worrying or focusing on it will not make it happen any quicker then you kind of release yourself from the stress.
If I found myself getting worked up over it I would remind myself that it is out of my control and move on to an activity that was in my control…… in my case, work!
I have worked throughout my diagnosis and treatment. It has kept me sane and given me a focus. I am carrying on with life as normally as possible and making future business plans so my brain is aware that I plan to be here a long while yet. My business partner has been great and when I need time off it’s never a problem. I’m very lucky to have this support as I’m sure many wouldn’t be so accommodating when it comes to business.
If you’re in the horrid waiting period and finding you’re getting anxious or stressed, take a deep breath, remind yourself that worrying will not change the outcome or make it happen quicker. Know that stress puts negative hormones into your body and you need to focus on staying positive. Negative hormones can feed cancer cells (so I’ve read) and stress is a big prevailer of this.
Say to yourself ‘Regardless of the outcome of the scan/appointment, I will be fine.’ Repeat it and believe it. Then, find a task that you are in control of and tick it off your to-do list. Keep busy and distract yourself where possible.
The wait is hard but you are in control of your emotional response to it. Remembering this will help you feel less helpless.