Looking for Some Help . . . Am I Nuts?


I’ve always been a sentimental person. I’ve always been a homebody. I like being home with my family. Is that wrong? I don’t think so.

But here’s the thing. Lately, and really, since the whole cancer thing, I’ve been REALLY sentimental, feeling homesick even when I’m home. There have been times when I’ve gone in the girls’ room after they’ve fallen asleep and just watched them sleep . . . and cried. I’ve gone in late at night and laid on the floor in their room just to be close to them. I have this extreme fear of losing them.

I go through phases where I’m overly attached to Jen. I get something almost like separation anxiety when we’re apart.

And my nerves seem like their always stretched pretty tight. It doesn’t take much to get the tears flowing. My feelings get hurt easily and I feel insecure.

Now, lest you think I’ve really lost my marbles, this isn’t all the time. What I described above comes and goes. Stress seems to bring it on but not always. It seems to come in waves.

Is this normal? Probably not, but my really question is: Is it normal for a cancer survivor? I’ve heard you never really get over a battle with cancer. It changes you, leaves something there that is a constant reminder of your mortality and the mortality of everyone you love.

So here’s what I need help with. For anyone reading this who either is a cancer survivor or who has lived with one, what do you think? What’s been your experience? Do you still struggle with these kinds of feelings? Do you still wrestle with the fear of loss or separation?

Or am I just nuts?

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About mikedellosso

Mike Dellosso is an author of wide-eyed suspense. He writes stories that not only entertain but enlighten.

Posted on April 16, 2009, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Well I’m not a cancer surviver, but after losing my only brother, I can say that loss (or near loss)does have a dramatic impact on how you view life… at times it can be a blessing… and at times it can be hard. It sounds logically normal after what you have been through… will be interesting to see what others say 🙂 My loss has made me appreciate life soooo much more.

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  2. Mike, it’s normal. It’s likely both physical and psychological, but it’s normal. You faced a serious illness and didn’t know what the outcome was going to be. You’ve gone through a serious loss — the loss of the person you thought you were. Most of that person is still there, but shaken to the core and in many ways reborn and learning how to walk again. You’re discovering how to live the new life that God’s given you. And it’s got to be scary.For a long time, I took a particular medicine. When I weened off of it, I (and my loved ones) discovered my emotions going wild. I found myself emotionally moved by the dumbest of things, and crying at the most inconvenient times (like when people arrived at my office for a meeting, and I just finished reading something incredibly moving. I wanted to crawl under the desk.)(Like right now. The picture of you crying while watching your children sleep — that was enough to do it.)OK, I’m back. My older brother has had a lot of serious heart issues, and he’s gone through something very similar. My younger brother almost faced losing his second child in a car accident, and now finds his emotions right at the surface.Remember that at night when you’re asleep, I suspect our heavenly Father sneaks into your room and sits there, with tears in his eyes over how much he loves you.

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  3. Mike, I have not dealt with cancer, however I’m going to respond to your questions anyway. First, you are NOT nuts! You’ve probably heard of post-traumatic stress. I got hit with it several years ago.In 1995, I had a re-do of an earlier hip replacement which included major repairs to my pelvis. While in the hospital (which btw, you are correct when you say it’s no place to get any rest) I started having what was later diagnosed as panic attacks. I didn’t know what was happening to me until I saw my family physician who referred me to a pyschologist. Since I’d had hospitalization and surgery before, the sudden-onset of high anxiety didn’t make sense to me. Several weeks after my surgery, during a post-op visit with the surgeon, I saw the “after” x-rays of my hip. I discovered a hodgepodge of pins, wires and metal screws holding my femur together. What was that all about? My surgeon had failed to mention that he had problems during my surgery and broke my femur. Ergo, according to the pysch, the event was the trigger for my panic attacks. I still struggle with high-anxiety at times and medication has been helpful. I’ve had subsequent surgery (on the same hip again) and did not experience any emotional ill-effects.Try not to let it bother you that you are shedding tears. I’ve found myself crying in front of my family several times in recent months and yes, I found myself apologizing because I felt it weakened me as a man. I was wrong. The emotional release was natural, healthy, and a part of healing.I have to tell you that from reading your blog I think you’re a dedicated, got-it-together Christian guy whose honesty is being used to positively impact others. It has me.God bless you!

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  4. Susan J. Reinhardt

    Hi Mike -I haven’t had cancer, but other physical problems kept me on the medical merry-go-round for a year. It has taken another year to fully recover from the after affects – both emotionally and physically. Give yourself time and stay in the Word. My relationship with the Lord is what pulled me through. Also, when I’d get depressed, I’d stop and evaluate. What is bothering me? What triggered this? It could be something as small as a random comment someone made. I’d look at the immediate cause and realize I’d allowed my mind to go into the what-if mode. Unlike writing, this is not beneficial in life. With my last MRI coming up in a few months, I find my mind dwelling on the possibilities. As scripture says, I have to take those thoughts captive instead of embracing them. Not every thought originates with me. Hope this helps.Blessings,Susan 🙂

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  5. Oh, Mike. You are not nuts. You have traveled through the “valley of the shadow of death.” You’ve survived but you’ve come out a changed man. When God takes us through the fires there are things burned away and life is never the same. Your mind and body are both adjusting to your new life and new perspective. The emotions toss and turn during this phase, but when you come through, you will be stronger and deeper in His presence. I’m praying for you as God brings you closer to Him.

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