Wednesday, January 19, 2005
Anger and Other Emotions
I have read stories, research and many other articles about anger and the cancer diagnosis. I can honestly say that I never experienced anger about my journey. Frustration every now and then, but not anger. Not until recently.

Last week my oldest sister got the results of a biopsy on her breast. I had complete faith that it would turn out benign and we were all quite jubilant when that was indeed the result. But then I had this wave of anger pass through me. I was angry that she had to go through that process and face that fear. I was angry that the possibility existed for it to strike again so closely. I was angry that my mother had to worry about one more thing with her daughters (even though that is a mother's job). Then a co-worker had to have something biopsied and again I was angry that someone else was going through this. What is it about our environment, lifestyle, genetics that is making cancer so much more prevalent?

Then on second thought, I don't think cancer is more prevalent. In the water industry we often discuss the evolving and endless list of constituents in the water for which we must test. As technology has evolved we have the ability to detect the various constituents (chemicals, minerals, etc.) at a much lower concentration and the ability to test for more of them. It is the same thing with cancer. I believe medicine has advanced to the point where many things can be detected sooner. Also, I think that as a society we talk about this more freely than in older generations. Really, what woman would talk this much about her breasts (clinically speaking)? Or let the world know she had a bilateral mastectomy? The awareness level is so much higher making hope that much brighter. I guess I shouldn't be angry that we are that much more aware of the risks presented by cancer and that we are testing sooner and more frequently.

I do know that the further I travel on this journey and, in a sense, the further away I get from the treatment, I have noticed different feelings surfacing and escaping. I will continue to explore the feelings and share my journey. As much as I think my journey is ending, I am realizing that it is just beginning.
Written by Jeannette Vagnozzi
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Name: Jeannette
Location: Southern California, USA

This is my story about being diagnosed with breast cancer at age 39. I thought I was out of the woods, but four years late it came back. This is my quest to be a two-time survivor.

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