I Can’t Direct the Wind… – guest post

A second post about Hodgkin’s lymphoma.  (see August 1 – “The Good Cancer”) this one by the mother of a very young survivor.  She writes at the very creatively and hopefully titled blog I Cant Direct The Wind But I Can Adjust The Sails

Take care, Dennis

Hello Blogger Friends!

As you may have noticed I haven’t blogged in a little bit and there is a reason for that…. there isn’t much to blog about.
Nick is now wrapping up his second week of radiation and so far (knock on wood) aside from a slight scratchy throat and some fatigue he hasn’t had the side effects that sometimes accompany this treatment. He now even has some uber soft peach fuzz growing atop his head…. the doctor said that this new baby soft hair is likely to fall out again but it certainly made me smile when I noticed it and his baby brother sure likes to touch it.
When Nick was first diagnosed we knew that this experience was going to change everything, there is no part of ones existence that cancer doesn’t effect when it swoops in and overtakes your life.
My views of many things have changed and one of those areas is friendship.
I would like to think of myself as a good friend, I enjoy seeing those that I love experience positive things and I enjoy being a part of the lives of those that I hold close but I realized that I gave my friendship away to easily and even worse I required nothing in return to keep it.
Nicks diagnosis changed every part of me without my permission but the one thing that it showed me was who was indeed my friend, sadly some that even shared my own blood were not while others that were complete strangers before quickly obtained a piece of my heart.
In the months that have passed since we found out about Nick’s cancer there have been MANY of my own family members who haven’t bothered to pick up a phone, pen or even send an email, there have been friends who at one point were very close and yet have only been in contact a very few number of times. Its always the same, I dont hear from them but then when we bump into each other in a public setting I hear the same thing, I was just going to call you …. I smile and nod all the while thinking yep sure you were.
I have experienced such kindness from people that are complete strangers (Kurt’s teachers dental hygienist sent us a Shepherds pie!) and yet those that claimed to love me disappeared when I needed them the most – its sad but at the same time I’m glad because my time, energy and emotions are better saved for those that deserve them… like you all. You who take the time to read my private thoughts, send me messages of strength, check in to see whats going on in my life aside from the cancer, promote my new photography business, sponsored me when I did the Relay For Life and have just done the things that TRUE friends do!
You who know that a few strokes of a keyboard can accomplish the same thing as a big giant hug – I appreciate you all more then you could ever know.
The social worker has said that this often happens because people just dont know what to say so read carefully because I am going to help you just in case you ever need some guidance, just simply say….. I dont know the right thing to say but  I want you to know that I think about you often and I am here if you need me.
I have never expected my family or friends to hold me up, coddle me, be at my beck and call, babysit my kids, fund my increased expenses or take over any of my responsibilities; I have merely expected them to not vanish from my life. If that is too much to ask then in the ever honest words of Kurt – Good Riddance!

I Cant Direct The Wind But I Can Adjust The Sails

NOTE: a reader notified me that he was unable to leave comments.  The “Register” option has disappeared from the “Meta” sidebar section.  I don’t know why.  No one can “Log In” because no one can register.  I changed my settings so that you do not have to login in order to comment. Hopefully this will work.  If we start getting hit by spammers and bots, I may have to look for another solution.  Currently we block hundreds of spam hits every week.   Dennis


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.


I Can’t Direct the Wind… – guest post — 2 Comments

  1. so sorry for the loss of support from some friends and family; happened to us, too, when my husband was diagnosed with multiple myeloma. painful and bewildering. but finding that cancer has an amazing way of making our shoulders and hearts wider for giving and receiving love – maybe we are the “lucky” ones. i will keep you, nick, and your lovely family close to my heart – sending warm hugs, karen

  2. I’m so sorry you have such uncaring people in your life. But, like they say, you learn who your friends are. The comment I dislike the most is “call me if you need anything.” Who is going to do that? No, just come over and bring me a casserole or clean my bathroom or offer to drive my son someplace. Good luck to you.

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