Susan’s Story: The Appointment

For Susan, cancer seemed like an endless stream of surgeries, doctor appointments and radiation treatments.  When she lost her job shortly after diagnosis, she spent many days at home recovering, wondering when her life would ever get back to ‘normal.’

The conclusion of her radiation treatments meant that Susan had several weeks to wait before she received the official ‘cancer free’ designation. “The thing about the wait was it was always there, looming in the back of my mind.  Even though radiation was done and they told me everything went great, you just don’t relax until it is ‘official,” she said.  “I am not usually a positive person by nature, always waiting for the other shoe to drop,” she continued.  “And there were days when I felt like it was raining shoes.”

A new job offer with a local company helped lift her spirits.  A weeklong visit with family, friends and grandkids in Boston and Cape Cod was a welcome distraction, but the upcoming doctor appointment still loomed.

When appointment day came, it seemed like the wait would never end.  When Dr. Flippo finally delivered the news, it was the best Susan could have hoped for – cancer free!  “The ‘all good’ from Dr. Flippo made me feel positive about the future.  Maybe because I had heard so much bad news from her, I was fearful of hearing it again.  I had never come out of her office with good news before,” Susan said. “In the past I would leave and go sit in my car in the parking garage and have a good cry.  It was wonderful to come out of there feeling that I truly was cancer free and as she said, ‘officially in survivorship.”

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