How to deal with the 95%.


Directly after I published my last post, I read an article about pancreatic cancer with the following title: ‘‘The treatment of pancreatic cancer improved a lot in the recent years.’’ Great news, I thought and started reading. This was a bad idea. After the article had described that the treatment had become much better for the first 1–2 years, it stated that in 95% of all cases the pancreatic cancer comes back. I was shocked! I was still high from the last control scan results, slowly starting to live normally again – and then such a prognosis! A prognosis I was not prepared for. 

So, how do I deal with these 95%? How do I feel about it? What should I do? Does this mean that I am living in a dying body? Of course I am. But does it mean that my body will disappear in the next 3–5 years? Does this mean that I should spend my money on a trip around the world rather than on my retirement plan? Good questions. 

Something I learned in the last weeks is the difference between knowing and feeling. I know that I just had a perfect control scan. I know that my body is not a number, that this number does not relate to my organs, to my cells. ‘Of course not!’ you could say. But saying this is easier than feeling it. And feeling it is more important than knowing it! 

So this week I made a contract with myself: I will focus again on what I have instead of what I fear. Because this hypothetical fear is only disturbing my balance. It has no constructive function nor does it help me avoid any danger. It only distracts me to look at what really counts, what is in the center of all: life. As in this picture. You look at it and you see the 95%. But if you only focus on the core of it, you will see what is important: the remaining 5%. 

This is the biggest lesson in my life.: to concentrate on the 5% instead of the noise around it. To find trust again. Every month, every week, every day.

Martin Inderbitzin