April seems to be cancer month for me. I saw my gyno-oncologist yesterday and in a couple of weeks I will see the folks to care about my mutant-ness and keep an eye on where that old BRCA 1 mutation is going. While it may have happened before, on some level I feel overwhelmed by the huge cancer focus that is April of this year.
But it’s okay.
I mean, weird, but okay.
It’s a funny thing, but it seems like the death of my parents and a few other unhappy events have actually flipped me back to the beginning; back to trying to make sense of thinking I was all young and alive and…. ooops, you have cancer.
Like, life has been a shit sandwich for the last few years but to make sense of it, I have to begin at the beginning.
I was trying to explain to someone earlier today that going to the cancer agency for me is both weird and good. And maybe in ways you wouldn’t imagine.
But as strange as it might be to say, I think being in the cancer agency makes me a better person. When I am there, I feel pretty lucky. You walk in those doors and you can’t help but see people who are having a much harder time of things that I had or than I have.
There is nothing that stops me in my tracks like being in the cancer agency and seeing someone who is struggling.
And I confess, every single cell in my body starts to cheer for them, to urge them on. Cuz to me, we are very much on the same side.
Which leads to my second point.
When I finished chemo, probably the most important thing to me, aside from a list of things that were actually unattainable, was to grow my hair back.
As I have mentioned before, I could never have anticipated what a huge loss it was to lose my hair.
And thanks again to the friends who shaved their heads when I shaved mine. It meant the world.
So, when I passed a woman in a toque, it took me a second to connect the dots and then I felt this swell of emotion. And then I realized that she has no idea the depth of feeling she stirs in me.
Maybe it’s all too sappy to explain.
But as completely emotionally bankrupt as I am, I would do anything I could to help a cancer patient make it through their storm.
And, that said, the man in the lab coat showed up sans lab coat. Instead he was sporting a suit he bought when he was on sabbatical. We made jokes about his suit.
I like him a lot.
Which is good because he “tests” me in ways I am not prepared to discuss right here. But for me, right now, with this set of circumstances, he is the best doctor I could imagine having.
And for the folks keeping score at home, he says everything is fine and we will check back in a few months. And that’s a huge relief.
And in a couple of weeks, I will get my upper body tune-up, so fingers crossed for that.
But today, or really yesterday, I got reminded of how much worse it could all have been, past or present tense.
And I have been whining a lot lately, mostly because I think I have a lot to whine about. And I do.
But I remember how much worse it could be, and I feel for the folks who have to be there and who are there. And if I could do something to make any of it better, I would. Because at the end of the day, as much as any other group, those cancer peeps are my people.