Monday, September 26, 2011

Up and Down.

It's about how I feel right now. I got a text today from a friend asking how I "really" am and my answer was, an emotional wreck but physically better.

I feel better, I'm not tired or nauseous. I'm starving all the time (though I've noticed already my taste buds changing, a common side effect and I can't taste salt like I used to) I have energy and my sciatica is back with a vengeance (funny how that nuisance is like a welcome pain)

But emotionally, I'm having a harder time.

I was able to stay in denial for a good potion of this. Sure, I've had two surgeries. Sure, I've lost a breast but I was able to hide that. No one sees the scar near my armpit and because of the prosthetic no one is the wiser that I'm short one boob but now it's different. I have almost no hair. I wear the 'telltale scarf' in public. I am officially, just by looking at me, a cancer patient. There's no hiding it.

I struggle with everything it's taken from me, my hair, my boob, my ability to live life on somewhat of a whim. I can't plan things because of appointments, I've become a germaphobe, I don't kiss my kids on the lips anymore. My self esteem isn't what it used to be, especially when it comes to Sean. Not that he's done anything but it's damn hard to feel sexy with no hair and one boob.

I struggled with the email I sent about the contest Emily and Mary are in. There was some misunderstanding about that - they are still guaranteed a prize - I just asked that it not be first place. We can't do the travel and Sean will likely be back to work by then.  However, I did hear back from the woman and she did tell me that they weren't the first place winners anyway and she told me what they did win. (I'm not telling though - if you want to know you'll have to watch What's Up Warthogs on Family Channel on September 30 at 4:30pm.)  It certainly takes a bit of guilt away from me to know that I cancer didn't spoil that for them.

I'm going to have bad days and that's okay. I'm allowed to mourn the life I had because the fact is, I have a new life now. My new normal. The one in which I have one boob (maybe a reconstruction in a couple of years), a new hair do for quite a while and that little niggling fear in the back of my mind that it will come back. But I'm also going to be stronger, I'm going to appreciate life on a different level than I did before and I'm going to be able to stand tall about proud and say, I fought, and I won.  Would a "Fuck You Cancer" tattoo be inappropriate? 

I go on Friday night for my MRI guided biopsy on my left breast. I'm nervous as hell. It's one more test that could potentially tell me there is more cancer. I'm scared they'll find some there and want to take that one off too. And if that is the case, so be it, but for now, I just hope and pray for a little ray of sunshine - a good report for a change that there is nothing in the left.  I don't want to be kicked when I'm down.

So if you can spare them, a prayer that the left breast is healthy and clear would be great.


  1. An F U Cancer tattoo would be totally appropriate! Sending lots of prayers your way for Friday. Love ya!

  2. I totally agree on the tatto! Glad to hear you are physically feeling better and sending lots of good thoughts your way for Friday. I can only imagine how difficult this is, but I think you are well on your way to kicking it to the curb. Keep it up! Holly