Sunday, October 17, 2010

Boo! Scaredy Cat

You must do the thing you think you cannot do.  Eleanor Roosevelt

Sh-h-h, come in closer, I want to tell you sumpthin.  Come in, crawl inside this fuzzy brain and take a look around.  Don't be frightened, this is my nightmare.

Are you ready?  Here I go.  I slowly open the closet door.  Invite out what is under the bed.  Pull back the shower curtain.  Let in the wolves at the door.

Hello all of you, fear and worry and sadness.  What would you like to say in this week prior to my bilateral mastectomy?

It's hard to let go of your familiar.  These boobs have been my familiar my whole life and for over 30 years for Husband.  We both liked them.

I'm afraid of what they will find when they go in.  How effective was the chemo?  Has it gone into the chest wall?  Will The Wizard, my surgeon, be able to save Flopsy's nipple?

How many more of my lymph nodes are cancerous?  If they are, what does that mean for my overall survival after treatment of this breast cancer?  Have breast cancer cells spread to other parts of my body I just don't know about yet?  Did the chemo kill those?

I am worried about the operation itself, one more assault on my body while trying to regain my strength and stamina after five months of chemo.  How much pain will I be in the first few days and then weeks after my surgery?  How will the next assault, radiation, affect me?

What will my body look like?  How will that feel when I put clothes on and go out into the world, especially when I swim or go back to work?  How bout when I stand in front of the mirror naked, will I still see me? 

How will those that knew me big busted see me or think of me now, "sans breasts"? 

Will I still feel like a girly girl?

I've needed to buy some new bras but figured why spend the money now heading into this surgery.  I'm sad about that.  I'm sad I won't be doing any new bra shopping till sometime next summer and have no idea what size I will end up.

How will Husband feel when he sees me?  How will my boys feel?  We are all used to me looking a certain way.  How will I feel when I see me?

Oh no, with a chestless chest, my ass is going to look huge! 

I am worried about the residual side effects that may occur due to this surgery and removal of a major portion of my lymph nodes.  I never anticipated the extent of collateral damage from chemo.  Will I be affected by collateral damage from the surgery?

I'm worried about the overload on my lymphatic system without all those nodes that will be removed.  If my body couldn't fight cancer as it was, how will it do it now?

How did I get cancer in the first place?  What combination of things first tipped the balance in the wrong direction?  I understand that hormones fed production of my cancer, but what happened in the first place?  I am sad and worried I will never know the answer to this, which makes the future seem scary and uncertain.  How do I prevent a future recurrence of cancer, blind?

I'm really sad about the people who are family members and friends who don't read my blog, and/or distanced themselves from me since my diagnosis.  I hear the worry and dread when they talk to me; I can hear it, they think I'm going to die.  They are really scared.

I'm worried about the financial strain this has put on my family and the many things we've had to do without since my diagnosis and me going on short term disability.

I worry about Husband and my boys, they are my first line of defense and are trying to be as brave for me as I am for them.  I worry about what they think about in their quietest most vulnerable moments.

I am sad about losing the pleasure and sensitivity in my breasts and how they sure filled out a sweater like Lana Turner.

I worry about not waking up.

I'm sad that breast cancer treatment is still at such a primitive place that many women, like myself, must submit their precious body to being cut, poisoned and burned to try and get rid of it.  Despite all this, many die anyway.  They say every 69 seconds somewhere in the world, a woman dies of breast cancer.

Sheesh, don't tell me I will go through all this shit just to die of this bitch anyway?

So there you have it.  Ok, everybody back in the closet!  Back under the bed!  No more bump in the night!  Not you silly.  Them!

Now what?

Can you find a way to be grateful, despite everything?  This is what embraced me in these early morning hours; Grace landing on my fuzzy head like a butterfly.  This buffet that is my life.  You can't get here unless you go there.  I will trust that the going creates the getting.  See me?  I'm still going and despite everything, getting.

Getting the love I needed.
Getting the validation I needed.
Saying the words I needed to say.

Feeling the things I needed to feel.
Grieving what I needed to grieve.
Letting go of what pleaded to be let go of.

Fear is no match for Love.

I take one more step into it, sometimes crawl into it, sometimes shoved into it, sometimes bawling into it, and Love waits there for me.  Love and grace and Debbieness.  I am precious.  I patted my own head tonight. There there now. It's ok. It's ok baby.

Let me live this sacred life that is mine, this way.  Let me teach this to my children by example.

Love. Love. Love.

I wrote that.

Fear is no match for love.  That is what I will do.

Love.  Love.  Love.

Despite the scaredy cat roaming around in my head, I will do the thing I think I cannot do.

with love.


Beneath the Eaves said...

I hear you and say Amen! This is the hardest week and I am so sorry you have to travel it like so many.My thoughts and prayers.

masonmft said...

I am here with love. Wish I could kiss your fuzzy head and hug you. XOXO Soon.

Unknown said...

Hey Chicklet, Look behind you, you
have a whole parade of love and
support following your every move. We
love you for your heart and head and
don't really care if you are boobless
or big assed. You are Deb, full of
love, compassion and a hell of a
laugh. Fight your fight but know you
are loved and not alone. yulie

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