At the moment life feels like a movie. I’m sitting on the sideline eating popcorn and watching all of this happen. Me thinks it’s much better being a watcher than an actor in any case.
It doesn’t mean that I’m not engaged or invested in my life, but it does mean that that I’ve decided not to take much of what is happening personal.
See, last week I got the news that I need to go for chemotherapy. For a while, I thought that I’d dodged that bullet but alas, turns out that the cancer that was in my body is sensitive to progesterone, estrogen and something else…. Something unknown. So the best way to prevent it from recurring is chemo.
So here we are – two days ago I went back to hospital for the surgical insertion of a chemo port. It was a proper operation under anaesthetic but I came back home the same evening.
While waiting for my turn for surgery in the hospital ward I met a fellow cancer warrior, older lady called Mari. We became friends. She also has breast cancer and has the same oncologist and surgeon as I have. Aside from Mari, there are three other ladies that I know of who were also diagnosed with breast cancer about the same time as I was. People that were previously only in the peripheral circles of my life (my partner’s colleague, my best friend’s ex-girlfriend and my friend’s cousin) are now my close allies. We have all had surgery, and all need chemo and radiation. They’ve all said things to comfort me, to make me laugh or inspired me with their kindness and given me hope. I feel their support, care and concern. Now I feel like I’m part of a tribe. A tribe of cancer warriors.
Ready or not, there’s a battle lying ahead. I always have the option to be frightened but in this situation being frightened has no value and serves no purpose. So I choose to, as far as possible, just to go through the motions without thinking too much about any of it (like the moviegoer watching my movie unfold).
I’ve decided to take action to get ready for what’s lying ahead. I’m going to lose my hair in any case so I figured now is the time for me to have some fun with it. I’ve dyed it pink (something I would have never had the courage to do otherwise). In about a week’s time, I’m going to chop it off into a funky weird style before cropping it short on day 18 after chemo when my hair is expected to fall off.
Then I bought a few lovely scarves – colours that I like. I’m more of a scarf person than a beanie person. I love beanies but only when my curls are able to fall out of the sides. Since I won’t have curls, I started teaching myself different ways to tie a scarf – I found one really useful YouTube video that even teaches how to make a faux bun among other ways to wrap scarves. So I’m ready for that.
I got my anti-nausea meds and my anti-constipation meds at the pharmacy yesterday. I have a blankie picked out and a few snacks and my bag is now almost packed for the war room. I just need to add my MacBook and a flask of tea and I’ll be good to go.
In the past week I’ve also cooked ahead (with Tony’s help) and we have some frozen meals in the freezer and enough cooked food in the fridge to get us through the weekend. So this is it beautiful peoples… I don’t know what the next few days will be like but I’m ready. I am not sure if I’m going to be fine or if I’m going to be wiped out, but I do know that I’m going to come out on the other side. And I’ll also know a little bit more about this aspect of life, than what I did before. At least that’s pretty cool 😎