Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Love and Biopsies, A Cancer/GVHD blog with Wife, Survivor and Dr. perspectives.

Welcome to Love and Biopsies! I was inspired to write this blog after years of hiding my feelings about being married to someone who suffers with a chronic illness. I felt guilty about the things I thought and felt, and it took a long time to realize that my feelings were natural; but I still worried that others wouldn't understand my perspective. Unless you are in my shoes you can't comprehend how emotionally draining it can be. I wanted this blog to be a place for me to be honest about our marriage in hopes that others in similar situations can have a connection and know they are not alone.

I am a housewife married to a cancer survivor who has GVHD (Graft Versus Host Disease) from a bone marrow transplant. What makes this blog a little different from the rest is the 3 perspectives included in some of the posts. The first, which is my perspective, is that of a housewife with a child and a sick husband. The second and third are the perspectives of my husband, who is a both a physician and recipient of an allogenic unrelated stem cell transplant.  He underwent his transplant in 2006 and has suffered from acute to chronic graft versus host disease ever since. There will be posts on here from my husband explaining what he went through and is currently going through. This will be helpful to those who want to understand the reality of life with a chronic illness. As a physician and survivor, he can answer many questions about cancer and GVHD. I hope his insight will be a powerful addition to this blog.

 I hear about many relationships that don't last once a loved one becomes ill. GVHD is brutal with many side effects. So it takes a toll on the caregiver not just its victim. I think our marriage works because of the brutal honest communication we have between each other. When I shut down, he needs to know why. It's hard telling someone you love that your heart breaks seeing them suffer, and even worse...it's harder to tell them you don't want to touch them because you don't want chunks of skin coming off on your hands or accidentally rub on a bloody leg ulcer. He knows all about when I feel uncomfortable or even "grossed out".  He handles it like superman and though it's hard to hear, he understands. It just makes life easier in a not so easy predicament.

Thanks for reading.