When I signed into my dashboard today this was in my top searches box:
Personally, my favorite link on that search result is the Aqua Teen Hunger Force movie script. There is a small part of me that thinks someone would probably benefit more from that link than if they hit my blog looking for answers. Really, I have none. Lately, it feels like all of the answers are out of my reach as well.
I’m all over the internet this month, taking pictures and playing silly Facebook games and pinning pithy sayings to my pinterest page…but, am I talking about cancer this month? Not so much. As someone who made it through 8 rounds of chemotherapy without tossing her cookies once, how much of a right do I have to even complain about my experiences? Sure, I felt like crap and I lost my hair, but it’s grown back and I had a full head of it less than 3 months after chemo ended. The surgery was hard, but I recovered and I actually like my teeny little breasts more–clothes fit better, they don’t get in the way of daily activities, and they look fabulous in a tight sweater. I had all the lymph nodes removed on my right side, but I regained full range of motion with my right arm and while the numbness is annoying, I’m used to it so it doesn’t bother me as much as it used to. I lift weights. I do yoga. I was a text-book case of breezing through surgery, chemo and radiation with minimal difficulty. Did I have cancer-lite? No. It was aggressive. I had multi-focal DCIS and a big freaking tumor on my right breast. It had spread to 1 lymph node–but, again…I was lucky–we caught it before it spread further. So many women had it–HAVE IT–so much worse than I did. I feel guilty because I feel like I really did get the pretty end of the shitstick. I mean, any way you look at it, it’s still a shitstick, but I got the end that cleans up faster.
Lately, I don’t even like to talk about how lucky I was–it’s like I’m afraid I’ll jinx it somehow. And…as someone who has both been there, done that, and purchased the pink t-shirt, how much of a responsibility do I now carry to continue the fight to raise awareness? As a survivor, do I offer hope or do I offer reality? Can we have both? I can see how women with metastatic breast cancer can feel left out of all of these pink rays of hope we’re shooting around the world this month–because, the happy hopeful survivor place? That’s the place I’d much rather dwell, too–and that feels like such a cowardly thing for me to say, but if I’m going to be honest here, then…yeah. I don’t want to think about this coming back and I don’t want to think about it spreading. Maybe it’s too soon for me to face the ‘what ifs’. Right now, I want to focus on the fact that I WON this round. But, I was lucky. So many women are not. What will I do if my luck runs out and I’m faced with that brick wall once more?
Aqua Teen Hunger Force says “hit it again”. And, I will. But, I’m not going to think about that today. Maybe I will tomorrow.