I feel like I’ve entered a time warp, Stardate -303941.2095065957 which is January 22, 2019, where everything changes. It has been about an hour since I got the news from the doctor of suspicious abnormalities on my mammogram. I drove home with tears in my eyes. I needed to do perfectly normal things so I ran errands like going to the post office, filling up the car with gas, taking out the garbage — anything to stop the thoughts. At this point, no one else knew. It was my news and maybe if I kept it to myself, it wouldn’t be real. But then, there was the phone number for a surgeon that I needed to contact glaring at me and options to think about. I need to process it all. A thousand memories started flooding into my mind; memories from six years ago when I was faced with this exact same scenario. The memories were so strong as though no time had passed since that nightmare.
Without thinking, I found myself at the beach, my Zen spot. Now, I sit here watching the turbulent ocean. It is extremely windy and chilly, even though I do not feel the cold. I think I am numb. Can I stay in this numbness, as the Metallica song says “comfortably numb”? My brain was trying to protect me from going to that dark place – that place of sterile rooms with strangers and looks of pity from friends. If I keep it to myself then I won’t have to answer their questions and repeat my story a thousand times. I won’t have to see the looks on their faces and hear their “I’m sorrys.” I don’t want any of that. I don’t want to be a poster child for strength. I’ve had to do that too many times in this one lifetime! I want to cry and scream and get angry and let it all out.
I am exactly where I need to be right at this moment. I am watching the waves crash in to the shore with a frenzy. Angry waves, like they are saying what is inside me. They are joining me in crying out about the insanity of all this. The wind is relentless. I need it to blow this hard, to swirl around me, to shout out for me. I have been calm for a week as I waited for the test results. I have distracted myself with projects and silly online games. I have had energy work done. The few friends who know something is not right in my world have been angels, surrounding and supporting me with love and prayers. But I have not cried. I haven’t screamed or let any of it out. I simply did not have the energy to process it. I told myself and others that I could not do anything until I had more facts about what was going on. Well, now I have more facts and it sucks!
I waited until I had contacted the oncology surgeon to schedule an appointment before I reached out to anyone. I had a few friends who knew that it was D-day, and they were waiting patiently and impatiently to hear back from me. As I said the words, they came out as though I was talking about scheduling a lunch date or telling about a food choice. It was the only way I could get through relaying the information. Then the reality set in and I let down the wall. I heard my friend say, “we’ll get through this.” WE. What a powerful word. She is a cancer survivor herself and fully understood what I needed and also what my fears are. I was not afraid to tell her that my overwhelming feeling at the moment is anger. I am so angry. Even as I said those words, tears came gushing forth. I wanted to yell and scream at the seeming unfairness of it all. I have already done this! I faced the monster and it was slain. How dare it come back to life? This was unacceptable, yet here it is.
I have been reticent to share this news openly and until now only a handful of people know. They have all been supportive and allowed me to feel and say what I need to without judgment. I need that. I need to be angry without hearing that I should let it go. I will let it go but first I need to let it out, to give it a voice and let it be heard. I need to cry without being felt sorry for as this is part of the release I need to do. I need to listen to MY inner voice guiding me to the best decisions to make when I have all the facts; even as well-meaning as other people’s words of advice are. If you have not been through it, you really cannot understand it fully. I need only to hear words like “I love you” or “I’m here for you.” I need hugs, lots of them. I need prayers and positive energy sent my way. I need to feel that I am still in control of my life and my decisions. This is not my first rodeo so I know what I am facing, just not exactly what I will have to endure, which may be nothing or it may be a tough ride. I also am not ruling out miracles as I know they happen every day. I know I am strong enough to go through the fire alone but it sure helps to know that there are those cheering me on along the way and waiting at the end of the journey with a glass of champagne and an attagirl!
The outpouring of love and support I have received already has been overwhelming. I am so grateful for all of you who are in my life. You are my blessing. You give me hope and I will hold onto that! I will come through this stronger than ever. Please set that intention with me. Please know that if I don’t respond when you reach out to me, it is because I just need time alone for meditation and prayer as I go through this journey. I will update this blog regularly so if you want to be notified when I write, just subscribe and it will come to you automatically. I love you, I love you, I love you. I am grateful for you! Be blessed.