One small, four letter word.

Everything we wish for is hidden in that word.

As time goes on between scans and treatment, the mind tends to forget why Mathew’s treatment for cancer continues. Instead, hope creeps in a tiny bit here and there. Hope that the next scan will give us good news.

For once.

That is why it is devastating when we hear that wretched cancer continues to grow in Mathew’s lungs.

With warm, sunny weather finally upon us and a forthcoming trip to Ottawa on the horizon thoughts of the next scans are pushed into the farthest corners of the mind. As the calendar trudges on toward the next scan date, towards the end of May, hope and fear creep out to the forefront of our thoughts. Each fights for dominance in our daily life and each teeters back and forth, putting our lives into chaos once again.

Until we sit in the Oncologist’s office one more time… fear and hope causing the omnipresent “scanxiety” which is so familiar to all cancer patients and their families. It is enough to put you on edge, tears ready to spring forth all the while your stomach turns and turns.

Until the moment we hear the results.

For two and a half years, with one short-lived exception, fear wins and our hopes are dashed. The devastation grows each time we hear another result where Ewing’s Sarcoma refuses to  leave Mathew’s lungs. Fear that the next treatment and the next scan will carry worse news. It rips your spirit and cracks the heart when once again, treatment didn’t work.

We may look like we are enjoying ourselves. The movies, dinners out and chatting with coworkers and family, etc, are a great front.

Please don’t kid yourself that things are normal behind our closed doors. The end of May is coming and another wretched scan. Mathew’s anxiety is growing and ours latch on for the crazy ride. It affects him directly and he fears more treatment and he knows this cancer is so very, very hard to shake off. How desperate we are for some good news.

I may look like the old me, but I’m not. The shell holding the fear in is thin and is cracking. In early June we will know again, if we have to pick up the pieces and try to carry on with the overwhelming threat of a stubborn, metastic cancer resisting treatment one more time…. or if we will all have wonderful news that will head us off into a good summer.

The odds, my friends, are not in our favour.