You know, I wish I could tell you that I have cured myself of ever worrying or being stressed since I was told “you have cancer.” I will admit that I am MUCH better at trying my damnedest to live in the moment and not worry and to always realize what is “small stuff” but I do not always succeed.
I came up with an “IDGAF” test to help me prioritize and just recently it hit me hard in the remaining boob as I almost could see it going another way. You see, my “IDGAF” test is to envision the worse news possible, as I received it in November 2016, the news that I had cancer. I can remember vividly BEFORE hearing those words and after how much I wished for the problems I had had the day before instead of this disease.
So I try to think through every current situation with the grain of salt/wisdom that “it could always be worse” and realize that as long as we are all “healthy” (and again, I put that in quotes because who the heck really knows if they are healthy — our bodies are a mystery but lacking an active diagnosis, I side with “healthy” always) then the rest will just work itself out.
Recently, I felt very woozy and almost unable to stand — I was standing though and walking and able to talk but I felt just OFF and of course I immediately thought, “This is NOT good.” But then I realized that I was missing my allergy medicine for a week and that the symptoms I had come on me (gradually for a few days until this bad afternoon) were potentially due to missing my allergy meds during the height of allergy season and maybe not, you know, a brain tumor.
I am still monitoring myself as we who have had cancer all know the drill — any weird symptoms that remain for more than 2 week (or severe symptom that happens like God forbid passing out or still for me fever due to my clinical trial meds) must be brought to the medical team’s attention.
It does not make much sense but I still do feel as though my dx was longer ago in the past when it was only 1.5 years ago. I look back on who I am now and what I am doing and how I am (trying) to help others and it seems like more time must have passed. This month is my one year blogging anniversary and it really is my lifeline, my way of getting it out. Sometimes, though, I have to remind myself that I do not blog anonymously and that with over a million pageviews and 57k+ unique visitors, people are reading this stuff — but I still share and I still go there and I am not ashamed to share it and I hope you reading it helps you or someone you know...
Lately, I have been working so hard on my nonprofit and also on my small business, I sometimes feel scattered, accomplished, not good enough, overwhelmed, in charge, ready to help so many people, worried I will not help people enough and just everything in between. I also worry about the regular stuff — my house, bills, husband, kids, mom, dad, etc etc but I have had to shake it off time and again.
No matter what, I cannot get pulled under or back into the fears and worries of before — there is no solution to that and it is no way to live. Recently, I saw pictures of me from last year at this time, still bald, swollen and ashamed and then I saw pictures of me from the year before that (June 2016) before I was diagnosed and I knew in my gut looking at that face of mine that although I was smiling and had not yet been told I had cancer that I was not happy.
So my plan or goal is to keep on swimming — to focus on today’s joys and try to get to today’s deliverables all the while knowing there is always tomorrow and that so long as I am on this path of NED and can stay that way, nothing else should matter. The bills, the house, the craziness of family, being a mom, trying to stretch myself too thin — those things have to just be let go and the moment lived in.
This is what I do in the time between.