Cancer Vacation – guest post

Gone fishin'

For a wide variety of reasons most of us cancer survivors are committed to keeping up our blogs.  We want to keep friends and family informed, we want to give back to our circle of supporters, we need to give voice to our internal and external cancer experience.  It comes from a sense of need.  It can come from a sense of responsibility.

But I like what one sarcoma blogger insists when she says “Enough already!  I need a break.”  Karen is new to our network.  She writes at Cheer Me On! I’ll let Karen know so she can read your comments here when she returns in December

Cancer Vacation

Things are good! Chemo ended almost one month ago. I feel good. My hair is starting to grow back. And most importantly, last week, I got good news from my CT scan.

So I don’t have to even think about cancer till my next scan, which will be on December 6, 2010.

Last week, when Dr R ran through all my options for the future, he said that my treatment will probably continue to follow this pattern:  the cancer will grow, we’ll use chemo to beat it back, and then we’ll take some time off… but eventually the cancer will grow again and the whole cycle will start over.  At least, that is the plan till someone comes up with a way to kill it forever.

So this weekend, I started thinking about how I could have years and years and years of chemo & cancer ahead of me. I guess till now I have mainly thought about TODAY and what’s on the immediate horizon.

I realized that the idea of years and years and years of thinking about cancer every day sounds completely awful to me. I decided that I want a break from thinking about cancer.  I want to go on a Cancer Vacation.

I am not talking about another cruise.  I am talking about just living my regular life, without thinking talking about and blogging about cancer.

Yeah, I said no blogging about cancer.  You go on a cancer vacation, you do not bring your cancer blog with you. You leave the cancer blog at home.

I know there are some of you who check in every day to see how I am doing, and I love you for it. You have no idea how your support and friendship and love have made everything so much easier to handle.  I think this blog is one of the best things I have ever done. But I need a break.  Maybe you need a break, too.

So, this vacation starts right now. My bags are packed!  I am logging off, and I won’t be back here till my vacation is over, which will probably be right before my next scan.

Let’s meet back here on December 5, okay?

Cheer Me On!


About Dennis Pyritz

Dennis W. Pyritz, RN, BA, BSN, has been a cancer nurse since 1987 and a cancer and bone marrow transplant survivor since 2004. In December 2001 he was diagnosed with t-cell prolymphocytic leukemia (T-PLL), a rare aggressive form of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). Dennis was treated with the then new monoclonal antibody, alemtuzumab (Campath) as this disease has a median survival of 7.5 months. He achieved a 26 month remission but relapsed in February 2004. He was retreated with Campath and went into a second remission. In August 2004 he underwent an allogeneic peripheral blood stem cell transplant with his brother, Mark, as donor. Dennis has remained in remission since - a near miracle. Throughout his career as cancer nurse and patient, Dennis has had the opportunity to speal to both lay and professional groups. Dennis has spoken on cancer topics and survival issues across the country as well as in the United Kingdom, Norway, Austria, Portugal, Honduras, Panama, Guatemala, Trinidad, United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Cyrpus, Israel, and India.


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