Things I Shouldn't Feel After My Cancer Diagnosis


I shouldn’t know what it feels like to watch my friends die.

I shouldn’t have to choose whether I want to have children or not.

I shouldn’t have to choose what drugs I want to take based on which side-effects I will have to live with.

I shouldn’t have to feel guilty for taking a sick day.

I shouldn’t have to think “I feel ugly without hair.”

I shouldn’t have to feel like a shitty person for living while my friends are dying.

I shouldn’t have to feel like a shitty person because I am out of treatment now and my friends are not.

I shouldn’t know how to pronounce “cyclophosphamide,” “irinotecan,” “oxaliplatin” or all the other drugs I’ve taken.

I shouldn’t have to be strong for my family and friends.

I shouldn’t have to know more about cancer than my oncologist or be asking my doctor about different treatments.

I shouldn’t have to know what it’s like to be missing random body parts.

I shouldn’t have to feel guilty for getting to do fun things.

I shouldn’t feel guilty for using the excuse, “I can’t because I have cancer.”

I shouldn’t feel guilty for having special privileges because I have cancer.

I shouldn’t feel bad for not wanting to explain everything to everyone.

I shouldn’t feel guilty for having that luxury.

I shouldn’t feel guilty for being sick all the time.

I shouldn’t feel bad for seeing a therapist.

I shouldn’t have to feel like I’m drowning just to survive.

I shouldn’t have to fight with my insurance company to get my medication and treatments covered.

I shouldn’t have to go bankrupt because of my cancer.

I shouldn’t have to choose medications and treatments based on the price tag.

I shouldn’t have to feel like a failure because I haven’t graduated college or figured out my life yet.

I shouldn’t feel jealous watching all my friends have fun without me.

I shouldn’t be mad watching their lives go on while mine is at a standstill.

I shouldn’t feel so out of touch with society.

I shouldn’t feel jealous of the children who have cancer and get the cool cancer perks.

I shouldn’t have to feel like I need to work twice as hard to prove myself because I have cancer.

I shouldn’t have to feel alone.

I shouldn’t have to feel like nobody understands.

I shouldn’t have to feel

Helpless

Weak

Alone

Pathetic

Useless.

I shouldn’t feel any of these things

But I do.

This post was previously published on Medium.

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