Matt Forney
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What it’s Like Being Diagnosed with Cancer

This is a guest post by Kid Strangelove. Kid originally published this article at his own blog, but he deleted the site a while ago so he could focus on other projects. He asked me if I’d be willing to re-post some of his articles on my blog and I said yes.

This January, my life was changed forever.

Everything in my life was just about perfect. Around November, I’d started a new job at a tech start-up and it felt like the sky was the limit. I was working with my friends, I was getting paid, and most importantly, I was intellectually satisfied: everyone there was smart, creative, and open. There was no corporate culture; hell, we were the corporate culture. I had found a place where I truly belonged, and I was excelling.

I had also started a consulting gig for extra cash, so I was constantly busy. I joined a state of the art Crossfit gym and was making lots of new friends while taking my physical health to the next level. I moved into a dope bachelor pad, the most baller apartment I had ever lived in. My social calendar was always full, between my wonderful friends and a multitude of girls.

Heck, that was the reason for my hiatus: everything was going great and I barely had any free time.

Life was perfect. Too perfect.

And if you’ve ever read a book or watched a movie, you know that this is the exact time something messed up happens.

And there I was, at work, relaxing in my chair, leaning back, fingers in my hair, after another bit of code was successfully written…

And then I felt it: a bump on my neck. This was not normal. It could have been a number of different things, so I gave it a week. It was still there. I decided to go to a doctor and have it checked out. I was given the choice of two weeks of antibiotics or a needle biopsy right then and there. I chose the latter.

Afterwards, I was asked to come in for a second test, and that’s when I knew something was up. The doctors kept their composure, I kept mine, and they performed the second test. The following week, I saw the doctor to get my results. I had Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a type of cancer.

I have cancer. Fuck.

With those words, everything changed, and everything became clear. I knew that this is one of the most treatable forms of cancer out there, so I was thankful that I had a pretty good luck of the draw from a shitty luck of the draw. I knew that lymphoma has been beaten before. I knew I was going to beat this. It was inevitable.

I know that 2015 is going to be the hardest year of my life, but it will be worth it to see out all of the years after that experiencing joy, beauty, happiness, nature, art, sports, love and everything else life has to offer. I know that whatever struggle I’m going to face will be worth it once I hear those four magic words, the four words that will drive me to tears: the cancer is gone.

Now I just have to take it one day at a time and see what happens.

I’m not gonna lie: there have been some downs, both physical and mental. From the insane nausea, vomiting, and other chemo side effects that hit me like a truck Saturday late night, to the girl I dated late 2014 who left me because I was “just too positive,” her not reaching out in any way, shape, or form because she realized that this same positivity that turned her off was also the key to my survival: it’s all just part of the experience, and I have to take it as it comes.

But the one thing that has truly moved and inspired me has been the support and love I have received from every possible corner of my life. So many people were eager to lend a helping hand, even people who I have not spoken to in ages or only knew in passing, and even complete strangers. People have showed me their best side, and it is simply beautiful. Thank you. I am truly humbled.

So what now? Like I said, it’s all happening one day at a time, so I’m not too eager to predict the future. There is a big update on looming, since I have fallen behind on updating it for obvious reasons. I have considered setting up a Patreon and using that money to hire an assistant, but right now, it’s all just me thinking out loud, and we’ll see what happens.

But for now, love yourself, love each other, live your life exactly how you want to, and don’t forget to crack a smile, because everything always gets better.

Read Next: “Don’t You Even Have a Life?”

  • MS Leavelle

    Hi Matt, I know this article is by and about Kid Strangelove, not you, but I strongly recommend to youthe book “World Without Cancer: The Story Of Vitamin B17” by G. Edward Griffin. It came out in the 70s, and it’s the most convincing and elaborate explanation I’ve ever seen of why humans get cancer (one sentence summary: scurvy = Vitamin C deficiency, cancer = Vitamin B17 deficiency). Definitely one of the most important health issues we face and it’s knowledge that needs to go viral.