David’s Esophageal Cancer Story
“I was not expecting the diagnosis of esophageal cancer, but I do remember that I was not surprised either. I wasn’t overly concerned, because I have put my faith in God, I’m able to accept whatever comes my way,” David shared. David is currently fighting esophageal cancer, and in addition to sharing his reaction to his diagnosis, he has opened up about his journey and advice for others.
“The biggest hardship for me has been dealing with the constant, almost debilitating, fatigue. I am normally a vigorously active person. When I received my diagnosis, I had already ordered shingles to re-shingle my house siding (part of my plan for several upgrade projects). Having to hire a contractor was outside my mental and financial scope. The next hardship has been dealing with the financial difficulties while struggling with “chemo-brain”, which I’m sure you’re familiar with. On days when I’m fatigued AND mentally struggling, I don’t allow myself to drive – so I feel a loss of freedom. Another is that every time I eat, I get a stomach pain until my reduced stomach can digest some of the food. Having to eat smaller portions every 2 hours has been the most challenging thing I’ve ever attempted,” he shared. So with all of these hardships, how do you find comfort? How do you find clarity in this snowstorm of stress, confusion, and pain?
Dave replied with how he finds comfort and support, “Firstly, I trust that God’s plan is always right and I also believe that he wants me to survive to do his work. I have a very strong support group among my fellowship in my church. When I’m down (and thinking clearly), I usually call on God to help me regain my positive attitude.”
Finally, David shared a few tokens of advice for others who are also battling stage four, or any stage of cancer, as well as care takers for cancer patients, “I have suggested to others that they put all their faith in God, doctors can’t cure stage 4 cancer, so God (and lots of research into alternative treatments and diet) is really our only hope. When I’m having a hard time, it’s usually when my stomach aches and I’m fatigued. That’s when my wife will tell me to take it easy, listen to my body, and then takes care of whatever task I’m unable to do.”