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I know I said on another thread that I wouldn't be around for a while but I feel like that's not helping much either. If this post is wildly inappropriate (in either content, the forum or both) then I'm sure someone will tell me and I won't do it again.

I feel really,really down. The horrible injuries of a friend's husband in yesterday's bombings is probably the catalyst but it's not everything. I feel bad because I don't feel worse about that. My friend, Louise, is a university friend. We were very close then but that was years ago. Since then we have kept in touch by cards on special occasions, the odd e-mail and phone call. We only ever see each other now when someone gets married and I have only met her husband four times. I don't even really get on with him to be honest. I am obviously devastated for her but I feel so guilty because I don't personally feel affected.

The thing is, and I really really hope I don't offend anyone with this, I am waiting for Claire to die. Her odds of never having a recurrence are low. I am so scared. I feel my life has changed forever and I resent that. I know how selfish that is but it's the truth. I sometimes can't think about her and deliberately block it out because it's too painful. The simple fact is that some people mean more to you than others.

This post is going nowhere. I'm sure everything will OK again soon. Sorry.


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People are beating the odds - who knew the odds were stacked so badly when they got on the Tube yesterday?

Claire seems to be a determined woman. Don't discount the strength of the human spirit. Odds low? Well, maybe she's above average, dude!

Take care,


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Hi Dee.

I know your post is under the family/caregiver section, but, I was under that section once myself. I lost two brothers to this disease, and it does hit home.

In response to your post. I think what you are going through is pretty normal for someone who has taken up the challenge of standing by a friend in need. I remember the other so-called friends that took off on Claire and are nowhere to be found.

It is their loss. While they are hiding in the pub, acting immaturely, and living their shallow lives, you have risen to the occasion to accept that this will not be easy standing by your friend, and that the road is bumpy to say the least. Also, that you have courage to face whatever feelings come with it, feel the feelings, and move on.

It is an emotional challenge to stand by a friend with a life-threatening illness. It takes courage and strength and tons of maturity to see it through. The rewards are multiplied as you face each emotion and work through it. This is a huge!!! opportunity for growth for you. I believe that with all my heart.

As a lung cancer survivor, I also think about my own destination. For the most part, even though I know that the odds are stacked against me, I feel like I am going to get through this one too! I have conquered too much in my short lifetime to be taken down by a few cells that have gone awry.

I understand your uncertainty and premature grief over Claire's precarious existence. Occasionally, I have times where I think that I will not make it as well. I think that is normal. But, fortunately, those thoughts are short-lived and I saddle up again into my attitude of superwoman with super strength and determination. I know that for me, my attitude and surrender to God is a huge part of why I am still alive today. It is because of my past challenges that I have learned to have this attitude and also knowing that it is God who is in charge, not I.

I don't know what my demise will be, but I do try to turn that answer over to God on His time. I know that I am on my own personal path, and not anyone else's. I think that others have probably wagered that I won't make it as well.. to them I say, Ha! But, I would like for you to think about respecting your own divine path. And when you can come to terms with not knowing what the journey is or end is for you, then transfer those same thoughts to Claire, I think you can have a better appreciation for what it means to be alive and loving just for today. Her path is also Divine. She may be just like me, one who is willing, determined, and persistent in surviving this disease. But, the truth is that it really is today that is the gift. And it is love that matters. And you are a wonderful and loving friend of Claire today.

love, Cindi o'h

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oh, dee! you're such a beautiful heart, you have nothing to feel guilty about.

as for your feelings over claire, cindi's post is so much more eloquent than I can be right now, and 100% right on.

I know for me, and this may be controversial, but it's my truth, I had to look over the precipice of my mother's possible death from lung cancer in order to be able to pull back and show up for her. I had to confront the worst case scenario FIRST and, in doing so, realize that even under those circumstances she was in god's hands, she would be taken care of, and so would I. only then could I back up a little, look around, say a couple prayers and realize that what matters is that my mom is here TODAY and I have the opportunity to make the rest of her life, however long, better.

I don't know if that helps, hon. I am thinking of you.



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Dear Dee!

AS a young woman of 33, my friend also 33, developed ovarian cancer. Her journey was 2-1/2 years and there was no family nearby to support her. In fact, her family some 3 hours away, hid in denial until the very end.

At any rate, she too had friends pull away, or just refuse to see the situation as it was. Together we faced her disease. We dealt with all the side effects, we drank a little wine (sometimes a lot), we laughed when we could. When she could no longer work, I stopped to check on her each morning and then after work. We would spend the evenings together.

This was a difficult journey for us both. We were both so young - as you and Claire. Karen was my BEST friend and I miss her still - that was 1981-82! But those years are my most treasured. Yes, I was fearful. Yes, I was angry. Yes, sometimes I didn't pay attention to others in my life. And YES, I was down and sad and discouraged.

Dee, I don't know what this is really saying to you. You just need to go day by day and live each one as you see the need. It is difficult to witness a friend's possible terminal illness. I will pray for you peace of mind and strength of will to see you through.

What a wonderful friend and support you are and will continue to be for Claire.

Much warmth with hugs being sent over the ocean!


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Dee, no need to apologize and your feelings are normal. All else pales compared to LC when it is in your life. Lucie and I have to be very careful when people complain about various things in their lives, which are real for them, because we want to blurt out, "What's the big deal? Be thankful for what you have." But we realize it is a big deal for them, and we just support them as we can. Hang in there. Don

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To those of you who responded (and who sent incredible PMs) - thank you from the bottom of my heart. I think I've been bottling this up for a while but thought I'd no right to feel it so ignored it. Thank you for not making me feel like a freak.

Spoke to Claire a little while ago. She's still full of not smoking (terror attacks notwithstanding) and mentioned a male colleague of hers three times in a 20 min call.....um :wink: I got off the phone feeling happy and thankful she's my friend. I don't know how long I've got her for but I know that she's here now.

A very much happier, Dee.

ps Apparently I'm going to Vienna in March, well so says Claire!

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Hi Dee,

Sorry I missed your post. So glad you are feeling better. We all have those days. We're human so we take the good with the bad.

So glad to here that Claire is still not smoking. Thats a great sign. Bless her heart.

She will be with you in Vienna. You'll see, because now she has a goal.


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