Wednesday Wind Up…
This is a week of pure madness and chaos… plus I am informed it is International Women’s Day; and it is the anniversary of my breast cancer diagnosis – three years ago today.
Next week is my anniversary of returning to New Zealand – and funny enough I fly back home exactly 6 years to the day; and I will be at Mind Body Soul 10 years to the day that I spoke there, and made the decision to have an adventure in Australia.
Our lives are all about cycles, patterns, symbols, talismans. You see 11:11; things happen on the same dates…. For me this is a major cycle closing off. It happened 10 years ago when I closed off the cycle of The Purple Shoes as I call it. I am not sure what to call this cycle.
I was asked the other week how I was after this breast cancer thing, and had I written a book about it yet. That is one thing I do not seem to be able to do. It just does not feel worthy of a book. As I said to this person – I was sick, and now I am not sick. That I feel amazing, and ready to rumble. She was a little non plussed…. and felt I should share my bravery… share some inspiration with others.
I got a little bit pissed off; for the last time (seeing as though we are ending this cycle of the ‘ripped tit’) I was not brave. There is no bravery in cancer; being brave indicates a choice – you can choose to be brave or you can choose to be a coward. I had no choice. There it was 7cms of Stage I maybe 2 (they could not decide) aggressive cancer – no choice at all. Here you go luv, into hospital… oh and while we are at it let’s pray as you stick needles in my boob the day before the operation… yes you will all remember that from my Monday Muse.
Waking up from an anaesthetic to see my lovely daughter and her partner – I think I told her to go home and have shag – it relaxes you. Waking up in the morning needing to pee; the curtains were closed, there was nobody – I mean nobody at all. I lay for what seemed hours, it would be one of the loneliest times.
Oh yes – and…. the woman with 8 weeks worth of poo backed up in the bed next door! So funny.
Ending up with an infection, with Mr Sucky, and 7 days in hospital again – amazing doctors, and nurses; my fabulous family, tramadol. Being wheeled to xray for an ultra sound, and the young man in the pink shirt telling me to put the ‘stick’ up inside… really? I had a fucking machine buzzing away sucking the shit out of me; I was high as a kite; I couldn’t find my vagina let alone stick something in it. I told him this is what he was paid for – do the job. He did. I did not have a happy ending however… no seriously they found a cyst – which… oh we can whip that out before you do chemo! Seriously!
I was not brave…. I had no choice. I wore high heels and make up to each infusion – because Chanel and Winston Churchill would have done that. I met wonderful people – Kevin Berkhan, Dagma; beautiful nurses and fab doctors. I made a cancer volunteer cry; and one particularly bad day I was rude to a nurse (I was mortified – she assured me it was ok… I still to this day am ashamed of myself).
I was not brave… I was peevish, bald, miserable and I binge watched Boston Legal to distract myself. Thank the Goddess for Black Sails, Game of Thrones and dear friends who rescued me when I fell down; but I was not brave, I had no choice, I had to get back up.
Of course it could not just be straight chemo – nooooo we had to have a reaction… a bad one. I felt like a leper; my skin came off – it did not peel off, or flake – it came off! Some women would pay a fortune for a chemical peel, and I must admit my skin is still amazing! I put up with being asked to take my beanie off by security at DSW – and to take the scarf off my face. The Manager saw what was happening and told the security guard to have some kind of empathy. Anyway – I was not brave.
I was a coward, because I could not face doing Radiotherapy – so I said no thank you. I was a coward because I could have been stronger, kinder and nicer to the people around me.
I was not brave. There was no choice. I went through it; the pain was not so bad – I loved my tramadol. The indignities visited upon me were the worst – to be vulnerable, and exposed. There is nowhere to hide in cancer. Nowhere.
The cycle truly ends next week. There will be no book (my blog is on my website under Monday Muse, and that documents most of it as it happened); there will be no inspiration from me; no motivation.
I had a tumour. It is gone. End of. Except for side effects…. but these are no worse than a friend’s arthritis, another friend’s fibromyalgia – in fact my side effects are nowhere near as life limiting as these friend’s conditions.
I was not brave. I had no choice.