4/4/2014 9:47am Scared

And so this new dawn, this different way of living is upon me. Thrust down from another place, is that from above? and calling my name, altering my life entirely. One day you get a diagnosis and you google it and you start praying. The next week you start chemotherapy and you do well but then even with the “wow you are doing fantastic, walking 6,000 steps and no nausea,” you still can’t help but wonder how you are going to live with this need for the cancer to die. While it’s inside you they have to start by sort of killing off both the good and the bad. We all know this so I’m not saying anything new, except you can’t really imagine the pain and otherness of the treatment until it’s crawling around your body and attacking you. Your white cells lower so you have to have a shot to boost them and your mouth taste like metal, curling in your tongue just enough. Your right hand, the hand you paint and write with tremors, just so it’s noticeable and that feels not normal too. And you’re tired. Tired of everyone telling you how great you look, how amazing you are and how it’s all going to be fine in a year.

A year is a very long time away. Part of me wants to give up this blogging so that others can’t know the disconnect I feel from my healing and the way my body is messaging me daily, moment by moment in it’s strange stabbing pains on the right where the cancer is shrinking or the sore wear on the left where they placed my port. I don’t want to die. I don’t want to live like this. I don’t want my children or my patients to read this. But I feel if I don’t write about it I might wither away. And I don’t want that either.

It appears that escaping this cancer and demise will entangle us all in a journey we’d rather not make. Some of my family and friends will believe this has happened as much to them as it has to me. They are wrong. Let me be frank about that. Watching someone fight cancer and having it inside your being are two very different things. Wish I couldn’t say that so emphatically but there it is.

The chemotherapy was exciting at first. Praying to God to guide the medicine to target the cancer and not me. And believing in a reversal in the growth. But now I just feel tired. Scared and worried about what 3 more of these Adriamycin treatments will do to me besides take my hair? And then 12 doses of Taxol and then surgery and then radiation. How how how how am I on the first week of a 36 week journey?

Help me. Pray for me. Lift me up when I am too discouraged or weak to pray and meditate for myself. Strength will be the answer. I will borrow yours when I am too scared or weak to find my own.

IMG_0014Thank you. Dr. Burns


  1. Please keep writing. You’re human. You’re so powerful. Your feelings are real, they are important – get them out. Say anything and everything. Show all of you. There’s no right, no wrong. There is SO MUCH LOVE surrounding and working in to protect you, Julia.
    So much love,


  2. Thank you Julia, Grace Church Millbrook and the Ball family are strong and you are in our prayers and lifted up now, immediately, and going forward, every step, every breath…

    Jim ML Gus & Sally


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