|Having cancer is
I do not dwell on it.
Nor do I focus on it
when it hurts.
brings it up.
The evening I got my cancer news I called my daughter. She had been affected since my first mammogram, deeply. I had not shared even the possibility of it with anyone else.
After I told my daughter the news, our phone conversation was like a drift boat. Vacant, quiet, roaming without oars. At least my head felt that way. As she processed amongst her tears I checked out to an abyss of amnesia. And had few words if any.
In this moment I realized my cancer was not about just me. As my daughter came to terms with the news she asked who else I was going to tell. I had never thought about it. Yet it was an excellent question.
I am not one to grandstand my ailments. My family dysfunctions have been enough for my lifetime. And had loomed over too many conversations. I look forward not back. Not in an escape per se, rather in hope and with faith the future holds more promise.
We both got our wits gathered to have the discussion on who to share my cancer news with. Of course my siblings, and estranged family who would soon learn anyway. I let a few soul sister friends know. Those who had experienced cancer; or with close kin. Those in health care, as they were instrumental in giving me perspective. And my neighbors. They wondered why I became dormant after fixing my property non-stop for 9 months.
Many I did not tell. I plan to eventually when I can say “I HAD cancer”. Which I project to be after the surgery at the end of this month. It is not that I was-am keeping it a secret. I just do not want to dwell on it. Recycle my story. Or, live in the shadow of it. I want to focus on what I CAN do for my upcoming small home. I ordered windows, doors, kitchen cabinets, faucets. When my brother came we put up my horse corral. Mostly, I bossed him. I did install a 4′ gate the other day. It was light weight. Yeah. I shouldn’t have.
For weeks after my mammogram I was processing- and coping with 2 biopsies. One which left me stunned and aghast. The many calls for pre- and post op appointments. The logistics of navigating my life, the insurances, my animal care, having a trust/will made. It was a lot to take in. I really feel for those who are incapacitated and have to lean on others. I had many offer to be my advocate, give rides, and more. I was-am fortunate my lump did not render me useless. I thank the good Lord for that each day.
Eventually most everyone will know about my lump that caused me a bit of inconvenience. I do hope I do not have to undergo weeks of radiation. Thus I am consuming anti-cancer foods to shrink it. We will see. The lump is more on my side at the end of my breast and the surgeon said she had a concern that radiation in that spot could affect my lungs and heart…as in-it could damage them.
I am taking it all one step and day at a time right now. That is the best advice I can give anyone in any crappy situation. Besides all things are temporary and this too shall pass.