“They” didn’t tell me…

Jon Acton
8 min readJun 25, 2023

“They” don’t tell me….

Jon Acton

It’s been a minute since I last wrote a blog/message/. Not because I’ve been bored, fanning myself with banana leaves. Quite the contrary. I have been lucky to be busy professionally (I recently returned from a medical retirement to being a public school superintendent and booked several speaking engagements) and personally (my lovely wife, two boys, two pittie puppies/miniature horses all going a thousand miles an hour over the summer.) Being busy is a Blessing that I know I need to be thankful. Not everyone gets the opportunity to experience busy. Not everyone gets to figure out how to be in several places, all at the same time. For many their journeys have ended and their families are forever changed. I know all this, but sometimes forget how thankful I should be. I am doing several things all at once just like my busy family. I am grateful. I am guilty. I am tired. I am sad. I am mad. I am persistent. Sometimes all at once. Sometimes, the order changes depending on the day or the moment. I am also learning. Each day, I learn something new that “they” didn’t tell you. I don’t know who “they” are. I do know “they” seem to keep a lot of solid and useful information to “themselves” and only grudgingly share after experiencing different situations. I am still learning, but sometimes I wish I didn’t have to keep learning so many things.

I am officially two years post active chemotherapy and radiation. I am extremely grateful to write that sentence. Sometimes it is hard to remember what that treatment Hell was like. When a cancer fighter is submersed in active treatment, regardless of the type or dosage, there is a survive and advance mentality. IF, someone is lucky, the treatment ends and the cancer is vanquished. For others, there is a pause, a respite, a passage of time in the “eye of the storm,” where there is a chance to recover and heal from the constant pounding of treatments. Not a declaration of victory, but a calming of the seas long enough to hopefully recharge and prepare for the next battle. You see, cancer hates to lose and is always plotting, planning and preparing to strike again, with more force and evil purpose than before. During this needed and interesting time in the “eye of the storm” something else is happening. What “they” don’t tell you is the treatment never really ends. I don’t mean the poison being pumped into your veins or the Hulk like gamma radiation being blasted into your body. I mean the aftereffects, whether physical or mental, that…

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Jon Acton

Husband, Father, Former School Superintendent, National Blue Ribbon School Principal, Teacher, Coach, Author in progress