wanted to add my two cents here, especially in light of the essay that
Betty sent about allowing ourselves to feel sad.
I think people handle their stresses in different ways and we have to
understand that rather than try to force them to do things our way.
We have many people on this list and many of them handle their
situations differently. Some have caregivers that do all the
research and make all the doctor appointments. Some like to do
the research themselves. Some spend every day spending lots of
time thinking about and being involved with lymphoma.
Others live their lives with lymphoma in the background. There
is no one right formula.
Some people are comfortable "battling" cancer and become
vigilantes against the enemy. Others are less combative
personalities who think of allowing their bodies to live hand-in-hand
with the lymphoma, as an "accommodation." Some people
like to question their doctors about everything. Others like to
rush out of the office if everything seems to be okay for now.
Some people feel that battling the medical community makes them feel
more powerful and perhaps that may help combat their illness.
Others would rather not deal with those issues because they aren't
priorities and they intrude on their feelings of well being.
None of these approaches is wrong. It is always important to be
who you are when you are well and when you are sick, and not try to
live up to someone else's standards. Most psychiatrists will
tell you that, especially when one hears a diagnosis of cancer, it is
best to let the patient ask the questions he/she is up to hearing.
If he/she is not ready, they will not ask. It is usually not
critical if time and treatment issues are not a factor. In many
lymphomas, with W&W as an option, it is particularly not important
to face all the questions at first. This is not denial.
Insofar as the person to whom you referred, Karl, it may be that when
he wakes up in, let's say 6 months and sees that he is still alive, he
may be more ready to understand and deal with what he has.
- Ronnie (NHL-follic)