Saturday, November 17, 2012


Trust a five year old to make you think deep thoughts. One of the real positives from my cancer experience is that I've reconnected with and been visited by several very dear friends. I don't recall my mom having friends like this visit her when I was growing up (probably because many of her dearest friends were overseas) so I hadn't really given much thought to what, if any, impact these visits might have on my girls. Interestingly Eriana seems to have an instant connection with my friends. Fascinating to watch, she has decided that my dear friends are in fact my soul sisters. She asks me when they arrive if we are soul sisters and of course I say yes. I've come to appreciate our sisterhood in the last year. Once she knows we are sisters she immediately takes to them like best buddies. She likes to snuggle up in the guest bed with them, sit by them at meals, regale them with tales of her friends and antics, and she (like me) feels genuinely sad when they return to their lives. It fills my heart with joy and my eyes with big alligator tears to see this. This is what life is all about. Deep, long term relationships, rallying in times of need, reminiscing, sharing stories, reconnecting after gaps of years without missing a beat, and loving one another's children as your own.
I also recently met a writer and cancer survivor from Seattle who is very inspiring to me. Her blog cracked me up and reminded me of myself if I had better writing And comedy talents. She fought her battle successfully with grace, grit and determination. She even went to spin class and walked a 60 mile breast cancer walk before she even finished radiation. Bitch. Just kidding. One thing that struck me about her story was that she was able to stay so active and fit during treatment.

For those who think I'm always upbeat, positive and inspirstional stop reading now so I don't let you down!!

I've wondered often if I could've been more active and stayed in better shape thru this journey? I like to look back and say I should have, but then I re read a few blog entries and realize it was all I could do for most of the last 9 months to walk from the kitchen to the bedroom. Physically I couldn't have done more i don't think. It's also true, though, that I didn't push myself to. But what the hell am I talking about? I had 42 chemo treatments and 2 surgeries. I pushed myself as Much as humanly possible. Or did I?
So one of the cancer recovery things that nobody talks about or prepares you for is the negative self image. I told Kendall last night that a year ago I felt thin, fit and beautiful - "hot" even. Now I look in the mirror and I'm repulsed. I look fat, bald and ugly add to that my grossly disfigured left leg, foot and cankle. Now not only do my clothes not fit but neither do my shoes and boots. Disgusting is how I feel. I just beat one of the most aggressive and rare types of cancer - shouldn't I feel victorious? Triumphant? Strong? Powerful? Lucky?
Kendall says this is probably very typical. If so how come nobody tells you about it? Equips you to deal with it? Prepares you for it? Shall definitely be on my list of topics for Dr Keedy in 2 weeks! Hopefully there are some resources I can employ to move past this stupid time wasting phase!

1 comment:

  1. I think part of that comes just from the society we live in which sets arbitrary standards for what women (especially) "should" look like. The media focuses on the exterior rather than on the interior and women particularly are subjected to negative comments about body image everywhere we look. Women are talked about almost universally in terms of their body, dress, hair, and image before a word is ever said about their accomplishments or intelligence. Men are not treated this way.

    You have amazed me constantly throughout this journey by your outlook, your determination, your energy, and your take-charge attitude. Hell, you were like that in 5th grade and I envied that even then!

    You have the most spectacular outlook on life and I have been really blessed to read these posts as you've gone along.


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