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!