We received a good diagnosis last week from Karen’s oncologist. No visible cancer remaining since her November surgery on the most recent CT scans. In essence she is starting from a clean slate. This doesn’t mean she is cancer free yet, but it does mean that what was there has been removed has not yet recurred. She does have an aggressive cancer and the chance it could show up again is still possible. We take a wait-and-see approach again, continuing with regular check ups and blood work.
I am still in awe of what our community has done for us as we have walked through this whole ordeal. I did not know what it meant to bear one another’s burdens until my own was lifted. Writing and retelling the story helps me remember and not forget your generosity. I want to keep it fresh in my mind because the gesture was so meaningful. I never want to lose that.
Scars play a role in that recollection.
Karen’s body now bears the marks of a surgeon’s work, but I see it as a symbol of the miracle of modern medicine that has kept my life partner and me together to enjoy life further. To think that the best minds among us has figured out how to reach inside a person, remove a disease and sew everything back together in working order is still in the category of magic.
The scrape on my daughter’s arm takes me back to the days of teaching her to ride a bike, and how she ran into the mailbox and got up with a bleeding gash that made me feel like a lousy, no-good, terrible dad. Why was I not more protective of my little girl? But it also reminds me of her resilience, and how she got back on that bike and eventually got the hang of it.
Our scars help tell our stories.