Next week I´m going to celebrate my 67th birthday. Ten years ago , at the age of 57, I have been fully working at my job as a department manager. After three weeks diarrhea and a painful poly-arthritis I got a long lasting anemia, which weakened me so much, that I had to interrupt my job for months.
I had a couple of investigations, including a bone marrow biopsy without result. Finally, after seven months, a second biopsy resulted in the diagnose of multiple myeloma, stage III, igg lamba. So, from one day to the next I became a cancer patient. There was no time to reflect, but the need to act immediately.
So my first year was filled with chemotherapy, stem cell collection, high dose chemotherapy, tandem autologous sct. After one year I started again doing my job. Ten months later the first relapse. Another chemotherapy. After one year next relapse, trial to collect some more stem cells. Chemotherapy. I suffered so much. Finally Bortezomib gave me a better outcome. Nevertheless, one year later next relapse. Then I was suggested to an allogenic sct. First I said no, but my sister was willing to give me her stem cells. They suited very well. So I approved and had the allo-sct in 2009.
It had been a hard period to survive, but I´d been successful and I lived 2.5 years without relapse. Since then I had some other relapses. Three years ago there where lesions in my liver. Radiotherpy was successful. Another year progression free survival followed. After that, lesions again within the liver. Actually I´m in chemotherapy again, hoping for good results next month.
Very soon after diagnosis I joined a patient´s group and I began to look for complementary therapies which were to support the medical treatment. The most important thing for me was to stay moving, every day. Even during the sct´s I went outside the hospital for walking. And I did Qui Gong, Shii Jitsu, and other relaxation techniques.
I discovered my voice after 40 years, starting to educate it and to sing within a choir. This was wonderful! I engaged more and more within the patient group, experiencing that I´m not alone and that there are a lot of patients in worse condition than me.
Finally I can tell you, that for me it is much more easier to live with myeloma, since I gave attention to death. I learned to integrate the possibility of dying into my life. I read some helpful books about death experiences and I constructed my own prospect of an existence beyond human living on earth. Since one and a half year I´m consuming curcuma every day. I believe, that this is supporting me in my medical treatment. I´m convienced, that every patient has to find out her/his own way. Nevertheless we may profit from exchanging experiences.