I have cancer. I知 dying


spaminator
#1
I have cancer. I知 dying
Special to Postmedia Network
Published:
September 8, 2019
Updated:
September 8, 2019 7:00 AM EDT
Mike Sloan in happier times. He is dying of cancer. He痴 making the best of it with a wry sense of humour and an inspiring air of calm. (Supplied photo)
By Mike Sloan, Special to Postmedia Network
添ou have cancer.
Every year, thousands of Canadians hear this from their doctors. It痴 frightening, confusing, and outright scary. In February, it was my turn.
A myriad of options were offered. We can radiate this. We can do chemotherapy. All, in the hope of extending my life.
We live in a world where many cancers are highly treatable, and the hope for recovery is high. We are, and should be, thankful for the many great advances in cancer treatment.
However, despite our best hopes, some cancers are simply not well understood or treatable. This was my revelation. A few months after I lost my voice, I was diagnosed with anaplastic thyroid cancer. It痴 a rare cancer that afflicts as few as one or two people in a million. My prognosis was grim from the start.
A surgeon and two oncologists suggested chemotherapy and radiation in the hope it may slow the cancer down. But that was merely a hope. No guarantees. I opted out, because I couldn稚 make sense of being sick from the treatment in what was likely to be my last summer.
The summer is almost over now, and my cancer is closing in. I知 having more difficulty breathing and swallowing. It feels like there is a huge, growing, hunk of mucous in my throat that I can稚 clear. I壇 been told to expect this. The cancer is tightening its grip on my esophagus. Eventually, it will simply close and I won稚 be able to swallow. Or, breathe.
I knew, going in, this would be the outcome.
Last week, the doctor told me I had, possibly, 6-10 more weeks to live. I accepted it. I致e been expecting this. I still look and feel relatively healthy and it痴 almost hard to believe this is happening. But, I知 entirely aware this is going to kill me.
(Supplied photo)
I don稚 have a fear of dying. I can handle that. But, the notion of choking or struggling to breathe really horrifies me. I don稚 want to choke to death.
Thankfully, I have the choice of medical assistance in death. Barring some other possible event, that is how I choose to die.
Some people, in good faith, say, 電on稚 give up on hope. But, hope isn稚 a plan or a solution. Hope can稚 guarantee I won稚 struggle to breathe at the end.
I知 extremely grateful for the time I致e had, knowing what was coming. Although I知 dying, the months between diagnosis and death have been incredibly rewarding, positive, and beautiful. I致e never felt more connected to people, or more cared about in my life. At end of life, it痴 a wonderful way to leave the world.
Deciding on treatment options for any disease should always be left in the hands of the patient. If you池e told 土ou have cancer, do your research, talk to your doctors and make your own decision. It痴 your life. Do what痴 right for you.
Above all, use your time to reconnect with those who致e meant much to you. Say what you want to say. End of life should be without regrets.
Enjoy your time while you have it.
Die Laughing
Mike Sloan has shared his cancer story with the world on Twitter, the same way he shared his wry observations on life before he was diagnosed with terminal illness. Despite the prognosis, his sense of humour hasn稚 flagged. Nor, has his brutal honesty about life as he faces his final days.
http://torontosun.com/life/relations...ancer-im-dying
 
spaminator
#2
FROM THE HEART: Mike Sloan thanks Toronto Sun readers
Special to Toronto Sun
Published:
September 21, 2019
Updated:
September 21, 2019 2:15 PM EDT
Mike Sloan in happier times. He is dying of cancer. He痴 making the best of it with a wry sense of humour and an inspiring air of calm. (Supplied photo)
BY MIKE SLOAN, SPECIAL TO TORONTO SUN
Just a few weeks ago, The Toronto Sun asked if I wanted to write about my experience as I die of cancer and I said sure, without really thinking much of it.
My story (I have cancer. I知 dying) ran in The Sun on Sept. 8.
To my surprise, the response was overwhelming. I致e never experienced anything like it.
I take my hat off to industrious Sun readers who managed to find and get in touch with me via phone, Facebook and Twitter.
Every one of them touched me with a positive, caring message. Not one person was negative. It痴 a wonderful gift you致e given me by sharing your own thoughts and experiences. It痴 difficult to find words to express how very grateful I am.
But it痴 more powerful than just that.
I知 49 years old, and I come from a background of alcoholism and abuse.
For reasons that have never made sense, I was made to feel responsible for every problem in my family. That it was all my doing. That I was valueless and no good.
This experience, of merely writing a piece about my end of life story, has truly changed my life.
Years of therapy, medication and self-doubt have been erased. The outpouring of support and good wishes have done what those things could never accomplish.
I realize now, that just by telling an honest story, I can have an impact. I知 not the burden and terrible person I was told I was for so many years.
My cancer situation is not great, there is no denying that. But, as I tried to emphasize in that column, there is always room for hope and positive lessons things Sun readers gave me in multitudes.
The hope and peace you致e given me have penetrated my soul in such a powerful way. I致e never experienced anything like it before.
Thank you, all of you, so much, for this phenomenal gift you致e bestowed me as my life comes to a close.
http://torontosun.com/health/diet-fi...to-sun-readers