I highly recommend Facebook. Don’t forget that not everyone of your friends will see you post. And be sure to tell those that actually love you, like your dad, that you have cancer before posting in Facebook. He likes to hear these things from you rather than from “friends of friends” that he’s also friends with.
This is my actual Facebook post. It was pretty cathartic.
OK people… Here’s the deal. I have cancer. In my boobies. We are parting ways forever on Friday. Sorry if I didn’t get a chance to tell you in person, on the phone, or means other than Facebook. You will hopefully understand when I tell you that if it upsets you that I didn’t tell you, sorry, but you will get over it. I promise. But I still love you and we’re still friends. Announcement over. Carry on
It’s not hard to understand that I have the “easy” part in all of this. Yes, it sucks. Yes, I get sick and feel horrible for weeks at a time. But you know what? I get to DO something. I “get” to be the one who is active in all of this. I have people supporting me at work, at my doctors visits, in Facebook and at home. My poor husband doesn’t get that. He doesn’t look like his world is crumbling around him. To look at him you wouldn’t know that he is losing sleep, worrying, driving back and forth and back and forth, all while working full time managing his office and employees, and the stress of managing the house and kids. He just has to take the scenic route, watching the mother of his children to see what it’s going to be like today. Yup… observer and loved one is definitely the hardest job in all of this.
God bless my husband…
If you’re going to get a PET scan, you should know that they insert an IV line and inject you with radioactive dye. You lie in a chair for 60 minutes, as still as you can, while the dye courses through you body. They then come and get you, allow you to pee, then take you to the imaging room. The scan itself takes between 15-20 minutes, and it’s best to close your eyes if you’re claustrophobic.
On another important note, you should know your discharge papers will state that you should stay away from small children and pregnant women. Ummm… yeah… As a mom, it really would have been nice to know that before going.
Have you ever been super excited to go to work? Walking with a serious pep in your step, practically skipping, with a stupid grin stuck on your face? I haven’t either… until today. Yes, my friends, today I went to the office for the first time since December 18, 2013. It was glorious.
Why, may you ask, would I do that? Because I CAN! I don’t feel good, I feel like ME. I can’t over express that in the absence of feeling sick, pain, nauseous, weak, yaddah, yaddah is a blissful sense of- being.
Don’t get me wrong, there are challenges. My first meeting this morning I walked in and surprised my colleagues, including my boss, my senior vice president, 2 VPs, lawyers, directors and a few worker bees like myself. Everyone was so kind and generous with their smiles and words. Not wanting to distract too much from this meeting I quickly take the nearest seat, next to my SVP. As I pull myself up to the conference table, with everyone still looking and smiling at me, these gigantic new, unwieldy, tissue expanded mounds of not-yet-reconstructed boobs knock directly into the table for all to see. Somewhat embarrassed that I feel like I can’t control my body I immediately let out a nervous laugh and go into a completely inappropriate diatribe about my new fake boobs, resplendent with a full description of my last fill, where they have grown into my arm pits and how misshapen they are. Silence. Absolute silence as I see a few smiles, more than one mouth agape, and once I exclaim “I still got it”, heartwarming laughter.
For one day, today, I was someone other than cancer. I’ll take that.
While I’m thankful that my baby sister started this blog and had the great idea to continue to document the legacy of our genes, it comes with a deep fear. I’m not afraid of failing at this, in front of people, but the fear that I have now somehow marked my children for this. Not only marked them for this, but will scar them by this.
As a full time working mommy, we carry a great burden of guilt with us. I believe that the guilt is actually something we want to carry, because if we didn’t feel guilty then we’d just be horrible mothers. But now I’m a working mommy, who leaves her kids in the care of others for 10 hours a day, and can’t take care of her children after that, relying on kindness or payment to sitters to support. What will they say when I can’t put them in bed? What will they say when I can’t pick them up and hold them? When I lose my hair? When I can’t get their milk with “pudding” in it?
I’m sure all these fears will surface and we’ll get through them, but we have to find some way to not continue another generation of women losing anything to this disease: life, body parts, living, energy….