Cancer Lesson #??: Having Survived Cancer Makes Me Luckier — Not Braver — Than Those Who Didn’t

Cancer Lesson #??: Having survived cancer makes me luckier — not braver — than those who didn’t.

It’s nice to be a cancer survivor, to act as a symbol of hope to others. And yet, I have a problem wearing a label which seems to imply I did something more than those who fought cancer and didn’t survive.

That’s not true.

I’ve been lucky.* My treatment worked, leaving me clear of cancer.* But it’s not because I fought any harder than those who didn’t beat the disease.

In truth, I had it pretty easy. One big surgery, rehab, three months of chemo, and now, nearly three years later, I’m doing well. So, I have scars (big ones!), and the muscles in my stomach and right shoulder will never be quite as strong as they once were. I can do pretty much everything I did before. 

I call that damn lucky.*

So many others go through so much more with less positive results.

They are the brave ones, don’t you think?

*at least for now. (I add this because, like many survivors, I believe that once you’ve had cancer, you are never truly free of it.)

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