My last post was actually an essay by my friend Gwen Moran who is a writer and a damn fine one. In it she delves into some pretty personal feelings on her life after breast cancer. How she feels, and even fears.
You see, there is one thing that breast cancer alumnae don’t want to talk about sometimes: the below the surface hum of worry. It’s that negative little voice that just lurks in the back of your head from time to time. It is because of that voice that I have worked so hard to remain positive throughout this whole experience.
Recently, I received a comment from a woman who was once like a sister to me. She was one of the sisters of my ex-fiancé. She left a comment on a recent post where she basically said I was “milking it” after a couple of years of having had breast cancer. I decided not to post that comment.
The heat of that comment sort of struck me in the face, however. Was I “milking it”? So I thought about it. And the answer is no.
I continue to write on this blog even though I am one of the lucky ones who now has two solid years into a cancer free life.
Part of why I write is because of the women just starting on this journey that I continue to meet. I remember all too well when I was starting out and have not yet had my surgery, and I didn’t know if what I was feeling, or thinking, or even being, was normal.
Part of why I write, also has to do with the women I know post cancer. Women who are survivors or breast cancer alumnae like myself. Ask any of them, and they will tell you that this experience does not stop when you’re sent home after completing your surgery and all your treatment.
With the meds, and even just all of the follow-up appointments that become part of your everyday existence, it just goes to a different level. You move into a maintenance mode for lack of a better description.
But if we are honest with ourselves, much like Gwen wrote in her essay, every once in a while there are these almost ridiculous feeling fears.
Even I experience them. Not all the time, but they exist. Sometimes it’s merely a little wrinkle of concern that quickly dissipates.
Sometimes I have an often irrational fear of breast cancer recurrence, because I look at women I know with similar diagnoses and who have had different treatments. And wonder.
Sometimes I’m just afraid, because I know other women who have had to fight cancer more than once.
So the other part of why I write, is indeed still for me. Because putting my fears down on paper, even the virtual paper of the blog post, helps me cope. That my friends, is a selfishness I allow myself. Somehow I don’t think God and mankind object.
I can also tell you that sometimes I also have the most irrational fears about other people in my life. Breast cancer, to an extent, has turned me into a worrier. And it is really annoying sometimes. My rational mind knows everything is fine, yet sometimes I just worry. It is something I am working on, but sometimes it’s hard. Much harder than I let on.
But I work through it, I don’t want people reading this post to get all depressed or negative about this. It is just part of what you go through. And you have to be honest and acknowledge the good and the bad to stay on top and remain positive overall.
Breast cancer hits the core of women, and it isn’t just the physical changes caused by treatment or mastectomy, or a partial mastectomy or cancer drugs. This disease is a thing that attacks the psyche too. (Of course, the mood swings which can occur while you’re on tamoxifen, don’t help.)
Today is one of those days for me. So I am somewhat more introspective than other days. Of course, it also means my threshold for bullshit will be lower than usual LOL.
Life in time march on. I really appreciate my readers and those close to me who have stuck with me on my journey. There are some people who will not remain with me on this journey. That is the unfortunate attrition of life.
At the end of the day, it’s all good people. I am where I’m supposed to be, and I am loved. And I love in return.
Have a great day everyone!