Cancer Talk #28: Learning to Surrender

Mid 2016

(I haven’t updated Cancer Talk in a while because….I have been enjoying life :D)

By mid 2016 I had done several rounds of chemo. Don’t ask me how many times, because I forgot.

Ask me about the name of drugs used in my chemo, I won’t know.

Often I can’t remember whether my lymphoma is Hodgkin’s or non-Hodgkin’s.

Some may call me ignorant, not caring enough about my disease, or reckless even.

I like the tiny little details of life, and it is not my character to dismiss details as important as the things I mentioned above. However for this case, I made the decision to stop knowing all the details.


First of all I do not know all those medical terms and frankly, they all sound really scary. When I started reading about side effects and what the drugs would do to my body, I got really really petrified. Most explanations are very thorough, listing ALL the possibilities (that may not even happen to me). Though I know it might not happen to me, still, I feel like the words would swirl around me, suffocating me and making me think of horrible things. A lot of the times, it led me to having panic attacks and I would get really stressed out from overthinking.

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Me reading all those scary medical terms – GIF from here

And so I had to stop. I stopped the googling and just surrendered to the treatments. I listened to my doctor when he explained what drugs he would give me. I listened to him the most because I trust him fully and I know that he will give me heads up if there were any major side effects I should be ready for.

I stopped listening to people who gave me stories of “the same thing” that happened to their friends, mum’s sister’s friend, friend’s mum’s grandma, etc because I believe that everyone who has cancer each has a different experience. Even when they have the same exact type of cancer as mine, I strongly believe that they don’t go through the same side effects as me.

I wanted to go through my chemo, radiation, and all the other things by my own way. The treatments I had to do were already scary sounding, I didn’t need to add more worry, fear and anxiety to myself.

Seeing that this “trick” did me wonders, I continue to do it until now. When I block all those things from me, I don’t think I’m being ignorant, I’m simply saving myself from being too depressed.

Of course I am only human and often I would get super curious and I start to search here and there. I would get so overwhelmed by the information I got that I would put my phone down and start reading or watch my favourite TV series.

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Trying to make this my life motto – GIF from here

By the middle of 2016, I learned to surrender. It was so useless for me to worry and to be scared, it was a waste of energy to do so (really it is, I would get migraines or feel extremely sick or as the Indonesians say masuk angin, when I think too much).

For me, it is important to stay ignorant but not ignore the seriousness of it all. To stop worrying but still be concerned that I get the right treatments. Does that make sense at all? In a way, it made me feel braver to fight for my health.


16 thoughts on “Cancer Talk #28: Learning to Surrender

  1. Makes sense banget Gy! Kadang2 the less you know the better ya.. maksudnya less ini kan kita menghindari informasi yang malah bikin kita jadi worry dan stress.. I’m glad you “stay ignorant” Gy, yang penting kan kamu happy dan terus semangat so you’ll beat it in no time xx


  2. I totally get this, sometimes it’s better to shield ourselves from things that could cause us stress and worry. Keep doing what works best for you, as I believe happy and positive mind do wonders 🙂


    • Yup! I was afraid people would think I’m ignorant and stupid for not wanting to know but I dismissed that thought because what’s important for me right now is recovering well! Thanks Dixie for your kind words!


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