Where The Streets Have No Name

No one knows what the future holds – except psychics I guess. So let’s rephrase that.

Practically none of us can predict the future. You may have educated guesses such as marrying the one you love or buying a dog – but even those have a tiny degree of uncertainty. Most of us LOVE planning for the future. We pull out our calendar and think about where we want to travel to this year, or who’s wedding we have coming up, or who is going to host Christmas dinner. We sit online and research houses for sale, or job listings, and think about all of the new and exciting things that come with those big steps. The uncertainty might be there and you may think of the “what ifs”, but then you wave them off and move on. 

For some of us, we live in the “what if” section. We are trapped in a jail full of “what ifs” and just when we think we have found the key to get it, more and more file in. 

Take a new job for example. You are happy with your job but you think – Maybe there is more out there? Maybe I have grown enough with this company that I now seek a new challenge? So you look online, find something that excites you, and decide to jump ship. How fun! 

For some of us lucky people who now live in the “pre-existing condition” category, that decision isn’t so easy. Where before I never blinked at the “benefits don’t start for 3 or 6 months”, now it would keep me up at night. Not only that, but take cancer for an example, you would have to have a years worth of clear scans to even qualify for disability. So the decision making process now turns into rows and rows of questions:

What if my cancer comes back?

What if my scans are clear but my blood work changes? 

What if the stress of this job causes my anxiety to spike?

I could go on and on. 

Technically all of those things were possibilities before. You can’t predict the future, but I mean come on, you feel fine, it’s not like you are going to get cancer within the next 6 months. That risk doesn’t even cross your mind. 

But now, for some of us, these streets on the road to our future are now named. We can see the different ways that our car can go and we have no idea what direction it may take. That’s what scary. Is that now we live in a world where our future is not only unpredictable like everyone else’s, but we actually know some of the paths it could possibly take. 

I might be headed on the road to clear, but I know there is also one called “small tumour”, one called “multiple”, one called “clear this month, some on the next”, one called, “small but could grow”, and so on and so on. 

I’d love to go back to when I didn’t know these roads even existed. 

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4 thoughts on “Where The Streets Have No Name

  1. Gail says:

    I completely get this. All I’m going to suggest is what I suggested to my mum when she was told to get her affairs in order. She was told she was terminal, but of course they could give only vague dates. It was awful. Anyway, I told her: Don’t let the uncertainty of tomorrow ruin today. Some days she took that advice, others she didn’t, and that was her right.

    There are so many “what ifs” in life, and you’re right. Many people wonder about them and then quickly dismiss them. Not people with your kind of diagnosis, though. That f*cker is there all day and night. My wish for you is to live each day as it comes and enjoy what is possible. I also wish that you are surrounded by people who understand when you want to punch something. With Mothers Day in two days, I just felt the need to share this with you. xxxx

  2. Lori Willson says:

    Jamie, thank you for your blog. I am on month 16 with this disease and live an emotional roller coaster. My liver resection surgery was not successful as the surgeon found more cancer in lymph nodes close to my celiac plexus and aortic artery. I am now back on FOLFIRI+bevacizumab to see how these tumors respond. As of now, I am not curable. Do you mind if I share some of your words with my group?

    • Jamie says:

      Oh course you can Lori 😊 I will keep you in my thoughts for hopes that they FOLFIRI responds well for you 💋 Reach out of you ever need anything

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