“So how are you feeling?” The question on everyone’s lips. The answer? I haven’t the foggiest. In amongst the almost daily appointments with a staggering array of (very wonderful might I add) medical professionals, my brain hardly has a moment to register what is actually going on. Perhaps this is for the best, because when I do have a moment to register that yes, I have breast cancer, yes, just as I was starting to feel like life was beginning again after my bone cancer and yes, the next few months are going to be utterly, utterly horrific, my brain well may turn to mush.
When I got the date for my lumpectomy (removal of evil boob peanut) my first thought was ‘that’s too soon!’ and ‘I need more time!’ Which is ridiculous because it was amazing how fast the process moved along, sooner rather than later is obviously preferable. But a bit of me (the bit that likes planning, and lists. Mmmmmm, lists) wanted more time to get all my personal and professional ducks in a row. But that’s not life. It doesn’t wait for you to be ready. Cancer, quite clearly, does not care for your lists, your plans. You feel like everything you’d been tentatively thinking about for your possible future has been swept off the table. Into the bin. And set on fire.
But the more I think about it, the more I hear from people who have been through hell and high water with their health, I realise that I can still plan for things, still do things that make me feel like I haven’t completely lost myself in this tsunami of medical jargon, injections, operations and fear. Just because illness is becoming my day to day, my normal, doesn’t mean I have to let it take away who I am.
Every minute of every day I am grateful for the good things my body does for me (hello strong, sturdy short person legs!), the quite frankly superhumanly kind people I have around me and how I totally am going to rock the Natalie Portman shaved head look (or perhaps more like Phil Mitchell from Eastenders, but one can dream).
Oh, and remember to check yo boobies ladies!