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The Gratitude Rollercoaster

The other day I had a great day trading stocks.  I flipped a stock that rose quickly.  It was the most profitable fifteen minutes of my life.  The euphoria had me pacing around the room, yelling, “Yes! Yes! Yes!” and making whooping sounds.  What a great way to start a day.

The next day I noticed that same stock rocketing upward and bought it, only to see it collapse.  In a panic I dumped it.  Then it shot up higher than ever.  I ended up giving back about one-third of my profit from the day before.  And I felt really, really stupid. 

Sure, there was still a nice chunk of change left over.  But nobody likes feeling stupid, especially when it costs a few hundred dollars.  This and a few other minor irritants dampened my mood.  It wasn’t a terrible mood.  I’d give it a C- if moods had a report card.

A short time later I went to a checkup with my oncologist.  When I arrived I saw the waiting room was packed.

“Great.  I’m going to have to wait a long time,” I thought pessimistically.  But within three minutes I was called back for my blood draw.  Then I had an even shorter wait to see the doctor.

But, that brief time in the waiting room was enough to remind me of how bad I used to feel when I had cancer and waited to have lab work done and see the doctor.  Looking around, I saw some pretty sick people and their loved ones sitting there with them.  It was never hard for me to realize cancer patients felt awful whenever I saw them.  This time I knew how they felt.

Three years ago right now I was dreading chemotherapy, which began the Monday after Thanksgiving.  The cancer was diagnosed the first week of November, which meant the entire month was spent with a dark cloud over me.

Fasten your seatbelt.  It’s going to be a bumpy ride.

Aside from losing weight, my hair, and my lunch, I knew little else about the side effects of chemo.  I tried to prepare myself physically, mentally, and emotionally as best I could.

Those few minutes waiting to see the oncologist upgraded my mood to an A.

I don’t have cancer!  There is nothing for me to dread.

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