Finding the Words (7-3-17)

What I am finding hardest at this point in my journey is finding the words. When I first heard the word “cancer” from my doctor, my mind seemed to put this protective blanket around my thoughts. I went to pray and realized I couldn’t. I wasn’t really angry just bewildered and felt I had nothing to say to my Higher Power. Guess my years of giving the silent treatment as a coping mechanism for my fear and hurt hasn’t gone away. Then, I needed to find the words to let my parents and my sons know. Part of me just kept saying, “I don’t really need to tell anyone. I’ll just get through this and nobody will know.” That’s part of the denial I guess. I choked out the words to my parents and my heart just about broke as I watched my oldest son go pale when I told him and his brother. Dean’s responses were classic and have been written into my “Funny Things that People Say to you when you Tell them you have Cancer” notebook. From the mouths of babes. After that I had one more conversation that made dread sit on my heart. How do you tell someone in a newly blossoming relationship that, “Yeah you can keep going out with me but it’s probably going to suck”? I couldn’t breath as I tried to force the words out giving him the choice I felt was fair.

Now I have told everyone through social media and the support has been tremendous. I didn’t want to say anything but I won’t say the love shining back at me isn’t worth it. Makes me wonder why we don’t shine this love at each other and accept this shining love without a health crisis. Everyone, please love each other today. Please tell those special people what they mean to you. Take the chances. Ask that cute guy or gal out. Go on that trip. Take that hike. Just love fully and deeply. Peace until my next update.

C-Day

Just the facts, Ma’am:

C-Day, aka The day my doctor called me and told me I have breast cancer: Friday, June 23rd, 2017

Invasive Ductal Carcinoma (IDC) – 80% of women with breast cancer have this type so I’m not special

ERPR Positive!! (At first, I believed is was negative but it’s not. This is a good thing).

Her2/Neu Neg

Ki-67 15%

Good predictive factors

Isolated to the one spot: Unknown

In the lymph nodes: Unknown

Next step: Meet with surgeon and oncologist at the Portland VA (affiliated with OHSU woo-hoo) to find the extent, the spread and discuss treatment

Prognosis as we know it: Sucky next 6 months or so

Fatal: Not an option

That all said, welcome to my blog category. I appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting.

Keeping up with the game

I don’t find getting my words out hard. Most of the time. Since I was young, I’ve had things to say and I’ve slowly learned over the years how to say them. The hardest part, to me, is forcing myself to sit down and get them out. I’ve come up with a myriad of excuses over the years: I’m too busy, I don’t want to get up that early or stay up that late, Everything is all cluttered in my head and if I tried to put it on paper it would look like a Jackson Pollock painting. If I spent as much time just sitting down as I do coming up with excuses not to sit down, I would have written a crap-ton of books by now. Not that I only write books. In fact, my writing career has been filled with amazing feature articles for trade magazines and on-line

Me dedicating myself to my craft on a Saturday morning.
Me dedicating myself to my craft on a Saturday morning.

columns. I guess I frustrate myself because I’ve been working on my book for way longer than I’d like to admit although I can’t actually call, “sitting around thinking about it” actually working.

Regardless, I’ve decided to rededicate myself to my gift and am working on my self discipline. Maybe I need to be back in boot camp although even there I seemed to be able to figure out the rules and then bend them just enough. In fact I had a Storekeeper Second Class tell me numerous times on the ship, “You’re bordering on insubordination.” Well as long as I stay on the right side of the line I’m still okay. I’ve been a very frustrating person my entire life (sorry Mom).

Thank you for being part of my journey. I’m going to try a variety of things to further my writing including picture and word prompts. Maybe I’ll go all Faulkner stream of consciousness. That could be fun especially if I do it after a period of sleep deprivation. By the way, I purchased Scrivener. I was using the 30 day trial period (for several years) and I liked it. I need to know more about the features so I can fully utilize it. I believe it will be much easier than cutting my interviews into sections and arranging them on the living room floor. Besides, my gaggle of teen boys would probably come and inadvertently rearrange them for me right after I have them perfect. I’m excited to put this tool in my tool box. Happy writing.