Welcome to Cancerland!

If you’ve been treated for cancer, “social distancing” is old news. Where not to go, what not to do, hand washing, been there done that. Why? Because the disease and treatment can leave your immune system a mess. All this annoying shit that, if it’s not driving you crazy now but might in the future, is a daily fact of life for the cancer patient.

Rodney Warner
Rodney Warner

Can’t go to work, don’t have medical benefits, afraid you won’t pay your bills? Stand in line behind tens of thousands of cancer patients without paid sick leave, without paid sick days, without medical benefits, who may lose their job, be unable to pay their medical bills or rent. Why? Because they’re bad, evil people? No, it’s because they have a medical condition and we need a “business friendly environment” not a “cancer patient friendly environment.”

Afraid of the unknown? Afraid your life might be turned upside down at a moment’s notice? Afraid you might die in a hospital bed covered with tubes, machinery and IV’s? Don’t know who will take care of your kids if you can’t? Old hat, my friend, thousands of cancer patients think about that every day!

Thankfully, cancer isn’t contagious, but if you have it, the chances it will kill you is generally, probably greater than the corona virus will. But if the current situation gets you upset, you’re feeling anxious, angry, maybe depressed, you fear the future, just put on your cancer patient glasses and see the world like I saw it for years, not days or weeks. Welcome aboard!

If the current, temporary situation isn’t endangering your job, isn’t threatening your health or your ability to live your otherwise normal life, maybe you can’t see all the people you want to see, can’t attend that Flyers game or bet on March Madness, maybe your favorite restaurant is closed, you’re healthy and fully functional but still feel the need to piss and moan about what we’re going through, put on your big boy pants and thank God you don’t have cancer.

Rodney Warner, JD is a freelance writer in his 16th year of remission. He enjoys riding his bike through the gorgeous roads of Bucks County and spending time with his family. Rodney is active in supporting his local Gilda’s Club through fundraising events he hosts.

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