I didn’t survive cancer to die of stress

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By Kay Kerbyson

Yes, it’s that time of year again. It’s the holidays and ’tis the season to be stressed. Crowded malls, last minute shopping, endless lines, 200 cards to write ... what? You mean I’m the only one who does that? Bummer. No wonder I don’t get many back.

For the average person there’s enough stress. Add cancer or illness to the equation and this season can be the Everest of stressful occasions. Have you ever thought what survivors go through on big holidays like this? For one, most of us don’t have the energy to do the full Christmas thing. Go out in the freezing cold and put lights on my trees? Are you kidding me? I’d have to take a three-hour nap afterward. Bake cookies for the neighbors? Sorry neighbors, but the cookie barrel’s empty this year. It takes enough of my strength to drive to Smith’s and hunt for a turkey small enough so that we won’t be eating it for three months. So if you drive past and think, “Boy those miserable people with the dark house have no Christmas spirit,” it’s because my Christmas spirit is being reserved for the true spirit of Christmas, my family and friends.

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