The last few days have been very hard…and I’m not entirely sure why. Yes, the back injections and subsequent effects on my chest were painful but I have endured much worse. Maybe it was having to experience walking into an Operating Room again and climbing up onto the table that really shook me to the core. I’m not really sure of the reason, but I have been riddled with anxiety since Wednesday. Taking off my hospital bracelet when I got home had me shaking and crying uncontrollably. Feeling the sharp pains in my chest as I sobbed only added to my desperation. It’s crazy. Why am I feeling like this!? On all accounts, I am “doing well” or at least that’s what everyone says. And they are right. I’m one of the lucky ones that I had a “good cancer”. Now there’s an oxymoron if I ever heard one! Good cancer. Ponder that for a moment. I’m sorry, but there is nothing good about cancer! Yes, since my bilateral mastectomy, I am deemed cancer free…but having and dealing with cancer is more than the cells in your body. It’s all the shit that comes with it. It’s the physical trauma, the financial worries, the emotional roller coaster and the struggle to find your place again in a world that expects you to be and look and act like nothing has changed. And yet it has.
My life has forever changed. I will never be the same person I was before cancer, which is not necessarily a bad thing. Eventually I will have implants to replace my breasts. Eventually I will regain my strength. Eventually my scars will heal and fade and eventually I will return to work full time and resume my life before I was diagnosed with cancer. So am I cancer free? By definition yes, but my life will never truly be free of “cancer”…because cancer leaves it’s mark on your body, your mind, your confidence, your family and friends and your entire outlook on life.
Today in the mail I received a card from a dear friend. It gave me words of encouragement which I so needed. Inside the card was a gift that made me laugh out loud and reminded me that I am tough. That I am very lucky. And that TGIF can also stand for Thank God I’m Free!
President of As You Like It Marketing & Communications Inc. Award winning speaker and author. Breast cancer fighter and blogger. I’m sharing my journey…the good, the bad and the ugly. Hoping to help anyone else that has been touched by breast cancer be it you or someone you know or love.