I have been growing a virtue. They say that Patience is a virtue. This is much harder than growing a plant, which I'm not that good at either. Growing my Patience is more like growing some wings.
Great patience, the patience of Job, patience that has been forged by looking after my lover's care for these past several years.
I've had to slow down...we both have. Everything takes longer...each meal, a trip to the mailbox, a shower, getting dressed in the morning. Things are postponed and deadlines are jettisoned because, well because this cancer is such a bitch.
So Karen and I both work on our patience. It's a different process for each of us. I don't know how she copes; she doesn't know how I cope, yet we both do.
Now we are waiting for the latest PET scan results. A PET scan is comprehensive and tells us how active the cancer is; and therefore how well the current treatment is slowing the Big C.
The scan was on Thursday; it's now Saturday night and we'll most probably hear the results this coming Thursday at our regular Oncology appointment.
Waiting for test results. Mostly waiting for the results to work their way through a cumbersome system that needs to make sure everything is billed correctly before we receive the results. Unfortunately, even this wait has become routine. No hanging by the phone. The results come when they come and it's always longer than one would expect.
The PET may explain why Karen's having more difficulty breathing lately. Needing more O2....not just at night or when exercising but almost constantly. Nothing exceptional showed up in an X-Ray but something is causing the breathing problem. Of course it could be chemo related or steroid levels or any of half a dozen variables aside from the cancer itself.
Another object lesson for patience. Is this a virtue? Or something we are adapting to, like background noise. Perhaps we'll find a cause for this one particular discomfort, perhaps not; perhaps it will be best if we don't find a cause. Not everything is fixable.
Photo: Alexander McQueen, Wings
William and Karen - Karen and I have been married for 41 years. Karen's breast cancer has reached stage 4. This is what happens next.