Childhood Cancer

Childhood Cancer Survivors

Chapter 2. Emotions

It has done me good to be somewhat parched by the heat and drenched by the rain of life.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

IMPROVEMENT IN TREATMENT for childhood cancer is a huge success story in modern medicine. It is now known, however, that survivors and their families often face many physical and psychological challenges after cure. You may be dealing with late effects from treatment, as well as struggling to find a new “normal” in your life. You will probably experience a range of strong emotions as you adjust to your after-cancer life; these can include fear of recurrence, anxiety, guilt, and grief, as well as gratitude and joy. Some survivors experience these reactions even if they remember very little—or even nothing—about their cancer experience. Knowing that other survivors and members of their families share these emotions can help you feel less alone.