I have come close to the end of the 28 days of radiation with 5 more days to go.
God has prescribed a surprise “palliative” for this radiation that I had once scared about multiple side effects and after effects and .
A radiation oncologist allowed me to use a shuttle bus to get radiation instead of driving by myself and this trip by the shuttle has saved my energy and gas fee, but also has given me fun “field trips” that diluted all my worries.
The patients I go together with daily are 10-15 women and men in various ethnicities. The average age may be over 60, and we all have serious disease, cancer, but everyone is friendly and fun!
Mr. A ,who is black and used to be a mailman in N.Y., told us about his tough time memories – like he would be chased by dogs and gangs while he was delivering mails, and at high school where the discrimination still existed, he couldn’t remember names of white students because they all “looked the same.” He told the stories with a big smile and humor without any grudge or bitterness.
Mrs. B is a brave 82 year old woman,who did skydiving on her 80th birthday. Showing her smiling pictures in which she was being held by an instructor in the sky stretching her four limbs, she said she didn’t feel any fear, but felt so good, like becoming a bird.
Ms. C, who lives with a female partner, is a spark for everyone. Showing her cat pictures, she said, “ He is so slow. He needs Special Ed.” While she makes us laugh, she also shows her caring part giving out her hand-made beanies to everyone.
We all have to wait in the waiting room until the last person finishes radiation, but while we were waiting for the last person, Mrs. D got a mischievous idea saying, “What if we all hid somewhere and surprised her (the last person)? The bathroom is big so we can all hide there. We can take the men, too.” She is so spontaneous that it is hard to imagine that she already had one battle with thyroid cancer a few years ago and now she is fighting with breast cancer.
The bus driver is a young small black lady, whom we call a “cowboy driver”. She drives so fast that the bus is almost kissing the car in front of us: She competes and doesn’t let a car come into her lane.
One day, all of a sudden. she yelled and quickly got off the freeway to park the bus. She told us the bus broke down and she couldn’t control the power steering and the brake. We could’ve had a big car accident but we were safe maybe because she was a really and excellent “cowboy driver”!
On the left, where the bus stopped, was a Mexican restaurant surrounded by beautiful bougainvilleas with a big banner of “Happy Hour” with a “champagne” on the wall.
On the right was a Korean church.
“ We can go to the restaurant to have champagne till the new bus comes to pick us up, or we can go to the church and pray to thank God,” said I.
Nobody complained but we laughed and enjoyed this extra time until the new bus came to pick us up.
“ We have an angel on this bus” said Ms. C with smile, but probably I am not the only one who believes that this is not a joke but the truth.