a little c

because I refuse to give it a big one

Posts Tagged ‘hope’

Change is inevitable. And scary. But good.

Posted by wendy on 2011/10/02

Our lives can spin out of control so quickly–and when you’re first diagnosed with cancer, the whirlwind you find yourself in does not seem to stop–ever.  I told a friend today it’s like busting through a series of brick walls.  You get through one, and there is another one standing directly in your path.  It’s the nature of it.  I’ve got this…idea of a quote I’ve read somewhere about tempering steel–and I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen a blacksmith banging a sword against the wall in order to make it sharper, so maybe I’m mixing up analogies.  Hang on, while I hit google,  will you?  Go get something to drink–or, if you like, go on and hit the link to the Boobiethon and peruse around for a few minutes, and I’ll meet you back here in 2 minutes!  Okay, I’m back and I found it!

The fire of adversity will melt you like butter, or temper you like steel. The choice is yours.

YAY!  I really like that quote.  Of course, in the time that I ran around google to find that quote, I also found more really cool clown make-up ideas, a recap of last Thursday’s Project Runway, and a dreamy picture that my friend Emily posted on my wall of Dylan Moran and I kind of lost the thread of this  post.  I am easily distracted by shiny things.

Now and Then

THREADS!  Yes, I know where I was going with this.  I fought so hard against the idea that cancer would change me.  I liked me!  I didn’t want me to change, to be different–I didn’t want to lose my breasts, I didn’t want to lose my hair, I didn’t want to be anything other than the girl I saw in the mirror in November of 2010.  The thing is…we all change.  I mean, that’s what life IS.  Things happen to all of us, good and bad, and we hit the brick wall or get tossed into the fire and then we come out..different.  So, maybe the ‘change’ bit is out of our control–but we can control the outcome.  Having breast cancer changed me–I mean, literally–helloooo to the Now and Then next to this paragraph.

So..yeah.  I’m different.  And, I fought so hard against it, but once I decided to accept the reality of what had happened to me, suddenly….I was okay with the changes–physical and mental.  I’m stronger and wiser and there are days that I am steel and fire and seriously, brick walls need to STEP OFF.  um…lest I give the impression of being a Super Hero here , there are also days that getting out of bed and getting dressed to leave the house feels like an insurmountable task.  But, even the ‘bad’ days and moments are tinged with this sense of being grateful to be here to experience the highs and lows of being alive.

My Aunt Puppy told me I ‘have a glow’ about me now.   I told her it was the hot flashes.  😉

It’s Day 2 of the Boobiethon, and as I mentioned, I am the Bloggers Helping Bloggers recipient this year, and I am overwhelmed and completely out of ways to show how grateful I am to everyone who has donated this year.  I have alternated between fits of weeping and elation and introspection and I feel so humbled by the outpouring of help that’s been thrown my way.  I had $2.82 in my bank account on Friday–we were drowning and you guys have thrown us a lifeline.  So, thank you.  Thank you from me, thank you from my son, thank you from Pip and thank you from Emma.

Here I am again.  Grateful to be alive to experience something beyond any expectations that I had.

Thank you so much for that.

Thank you.

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The Tragics

Posted by wendy on 2011/08/31

I can barely lift my arms as I type this post (new BodyPump release–ow ow ow), but I must update, cause cool stuff is happening this week!  I saw my radiologist yesterday, and she pronounced the boobage free of any signs of fibrosis or any other hinky stuff, so I don’t have to go back for SIX MONTHS.  Can we all say YES!! together?  Cause..YES!!   There was a cute moment when the receptionist asked me if I preferred morning  or afternoon and I was all “Um…next February?  I have no idea what I’m going to be doing next February–I don’t even have a 2012 calendar yet.  hee.”

Tragic!!! Although, not so tragic that I didn't bother to put on lipstick before taking my picture.

I actually have loads of appointments to make this week.  Tomorrow, I have my baseline PET scan, then I see my oncologist on Friday.  (The camera is down at OMI, so my PET scan has been put off til Tuesday. ) I have to set up an  appointment with my gynecologist and then set up my next mammogram and it feels like a LOT of doctor-type stuff is happening, but there is a bit of comfort in knowing that the majority of what I have ahead of me is really just routine stuff.  There is a small bit of fear attached to the routine stuff now (WHATIFITCOMESBACK??) …but, I’m not going to dwell on it or let it overtake me.

I had a wonderful time away, and while I am suffering from a tiny bit of jetlag and a very large case of The Tragics (which consists of a lot of sighing and laying around looking like someone stole the stripes out of my peppermints), I’m doing pretty well.  My zenfolio subscription expires tomorrow, and I will not be renewing, (because food comes before internet toys), so I will take this time to thank everyone who bought an image from me, or passed the link along so someone else could.  Seriously, you guys helped me  more than I can say.

There is so much wrong in my life right now that the enormity of it occasionally crushes me, but there is also so much in my life that is right and good and wonderful….and I really do believe the good outweighs the bad.  It nearly always has.

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If life gives you lemons, make sure you’ve got some vodka in the freezer, because lemonade without vodka is boring.

Posted by wendy on 2011/03/30

Occasionally, I like to look on the bright side of my situation.  So, today, I am going to make some hard lemonade and share it with you.

I have  discovered an unending wellspring of support and love in both likely and unlikely places.   People I’ve never met have knitted me hats, sent me little gifts and cards to cheer me up–I’ve had countless emails offering support and well-wishes from so many people–it’s humbling and overwhelming and nearly impossible to articulate how appreciative I am and how much of my strength has come  from this knowledge.

Along those lines..I’ve met the most amazing women since this happened. Women who’ve been through it, women who are going through it–they make me laugh and think and they give me hope.  I really love that.  Granted, I have no doubt we’d all much rather  be able to bond over our love of shoes/scrapbooking/stamp collections/whatever, but just the same, I’m glad to have found them.

I no longer have to shop in expensive specialty shops for bras.  That first trip into Victoria’s Secret to buy a cute little padded bra (courtesy of my fabulous friend, Brenda, who immediately sent me a gift certificate when she found out about my diagnosis and pending surgery)?  Well, that was super fun.  And, then–a huge revelation for me was finding a Calvin Klein bra for $6.99 in TJ Maxx.  INSANE, people.  I used to pay $60 for my bras on a good sale day.  I love that I can walk into Target and pull a cute little 36C off the rack for $10.

And, clothes!  ooo..I’ve discovered that my inner fashionista is actually coming out to play more and more.  When you don’t have any hair, you’ve gotta work everything else just a wee bit more, I think.  And, there is the added bonus that my wig is already styled, so the usual half-hour/hour I used to spend on my hair  before going out has been cut to pretty much nothing.  I’ve always been pretty firmly against showing up at Walmart or the grocery store in your sweats (Seriously–M makes fun of me because he says I dress up for doctor’s appointments like I’m going on a date–he’s not entirely wrong, although I’m less likely to wear my super sexy lacy bras to see my oncologist. I like her a lot, but not *that* much), but I’ve discovered I pay even more attention now.  I’ve become very detail-oriented with jewelry, shoes, bags.  I like exploring this side of me.

Tank Girl! Fake cigarette (cause smoking is bad--mkay?), fake gun, fake mohawk--but GENUINE bald head! A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, I tell you! Well. Hopefully, just the once.

I’ve also found this experience to be a validation of the lifestyle changes I made last year.  2010, aka The Year of Getting Fit, was an important year for me.  Had I not lost weight, I may not have found the lump in my breast.   All those months of daily workouts and getting in shape were instrumental in my ability to  heal quickly from my surgeries, and I firmly believe that it’s made chemo much easier for me than it otherwise would have been.

Artistically, it’s been fun to play around with my shiny bald head.  One does not get the opportunity to bedazzle one’s head very often, I think.  There are days I cannot face a camera, but the times that I have felt well enough to do it, I’ve been pretty pleased with the results–and since I am freakishly into documenting stuff, I think it will be nice to have something to look back on and smile about.

So, you know–good things have come from this.  I try to keep that in mind when I start to feel dark.

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I woke up at 5:30 with poetry in my head

Posted by wendy on 2011/03/21

No, really.  I totally did.  I mean, I have been meaning to write that Ode to my port for a while, and this morning, I was inspired enough to try a few different styles of poetry.  I’d considered eeking them out over a period of time, but the chances of me remembering this stuff are pretty small, so we’ll just have a poetry round-up right here, right now.

First up!  The Official Ode to my Port.  I really wish I’d thought ahead and just made that font a bit more flowery.  Just pretend it’s super scrolly and that there are butterflies and unicorns prancing around in the background, ok?

Oh! Port–my port
My left arm
free of bruises
asks me to send you


I’ve decided that since this mentions “breeze’, which is nature-related, that this is totally an official haiku.  Please do not call the Poetry Police.

hard tiny round disc
you have made chemo a breeze
yet ruin my neckline


This is a senryu about my port and a bit of an homage to my surgeon.  Aren’t you totally impressed that I know the difference?  Helloooo, I was  privy to the Santa Monica poetry scene for a super long time!  I know things.  Poetic things.

installed by Amish
flash some skin, but just a peek
cleavage is evil


Lastly, I have an offering of free verse for you.  It’s totally angry and aggressive!  I feel like I was channeling my inner 14 year old when I wrote it and frankly, I feel this piece would be much better as a live performance piece than just words on my blog.  I’d wear a black turtle neck carry a clove cigarette that I wouldn’t smoke…I’d just let it sit in my hand and burn, baby, burn.  Then, I’d flick into to floor as I was finished and you could all snap for me when I was finished and IT WOULD BE AWESOME.  Oh yeah.  I’ve thought about that one.  What?

alien tech under my skin
hook me up
shoot me up
make me sick to cure me

I really need a little pink diary with a tiny padlock so I can furiously scribble my angsty poems into it, don’t I?  Oh wait.  I don’t need that, because I have the internet.  HA!  Speaking of, I totally did decorate my port.  I meant to put a green stem up to my neck, but I’m actually still skeevy about touching that line.

It's CHEMOFLAGED! ahahahaha.


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