Leukemia Phone Calls

OK, so here I am, visiting my parents in Palm Desert. I have just been told that I have Leukemia; by phone. I hadn't been ill and was just seeing my doctor for a routine check-up. I didn’t anticipate any serious complications, even though looking back, I did have minor symptoms.

I live in North Hills, two hours away with the love of my life. I am expected home that day in time to teach our weekly Country 2 Step classes at The Borderline in Thousand Oaks, Ca. He knows that I had seen my doctor the previous day and was supposed to have a CAT scan that afternoon. We really were not overly concerned. Shortly after telling him that my CAT scan was scheduled for 1:00 pm that day, my doctor called with the news. Ugh! What do I do now? Call him back at work or wait until he gets off.

Of course, I could not wait. I needed to talk to him, to hear his voice, for him to tell me that everything was going to be OK. My first thought as I was dialing the phone was, “Well, this is surely a make-it or break-it kind of phone call!” I guess we’ll see just what we are both made of and how our relationship will endure.

I am sure that he was as shocked and scared as I was, but he never let me know it. He was calm and collected and said he would be there as soon as he could. He went home and called to see what I wanted him to bring from home. He remembered everything except our phone chargers, and if you are like me, you know what that means. You cannot call anyone, because you don’t know their number! It was a blessing in disguise as I was too exhausted mentally and physically to even talk on the phone.

I decided to wait until morning to call my children. I wanted to have more information and know exactly what we were dealing with before burdening them with the reality that their mother has cancer. As a mother it is very difficult to tell your children anything that will cause them sadness or worry. I figured one more night without worrying about me would be a good thing. Besides, imagining not being around to share their lives and families is more than I can bear. I just could not bring myself to say the words, “I have leukemia” one more time that day. So with that decision made, I headed to the Emergency Room.


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