In the 80s I began to visit Central America and Nicaragua in particular. I went out to the Atlantic Region where the indigeneous people favored the contras for lots of good reasons. I visited people who had nothing, who were oppressed by the Spanish-speakers of the west and swindled by the Europeans and Americans who took the resources and left the land stripped and barren. We talked about culture shock. The culture shock was never that of experiencing Nicaragua, but of returning to our world and finding a culture immersed in materialism and friends and family who had no way of understanding the changes that had happened to us.
Cancer is another world. Like visiting Nicaragua, it causes changes to who you are, who you understand yourself to be. Friends and family have little ability to understand the changes.
I am learning that there are lots of other worlds out there. Loss of a child. The accidental killing of another. Loss of abilities. Old age. A child with horrific problems.