Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Some days are better than others...

The truth is that the recovery process has gone remarkably well.
Pain has been at a minimum.
I've been sleeping well, eating well, and my hair is growing in well.

My hair is growing in, yes, but I will never use those rollers again!

No serious complaints.
But still...
but still.
Some days are better than others.

Sometimes I look at my chest in the mirror and I cry.
The scars are long and still a little tender to the touch.
I hate the fact that I had to choose to have my breasts removed.
I hate the reminders that little scars on my abdomen provide -
my uterus, ovaries, cervix, and fallopian tubes are no more.
That sucks. Truly it does.

Some days I want to do to the supermarket shopping by myself.
But I can't lift grocery bags yet.
Some days I want to vacuum the stairs and the family room by myself.
But I can't lift the vacuum cleaner yet.
Sometimes I want to walk the long loop around my neighborhood.
But I don't have that much strength yet.
Some days I want to tackle the growing pile of ironing in the laundry room.
But I'm not supposed to take on tasks like that yet either.
Some days I want to cook a big meal, bake cookies, and clean up after myself.
But again, that kind of undertaking is going to have to wait a few more weeks.

Don't get me wrong; it is nice to NOT have to do all the chores I usually do.
It's nice to get a break from the heavy lifting, literally and figuratively.
It has been truly glorious to see how my family has stepped in and taken care of the food, the cooking, the laundry, and most of all, they have taken exceptional care of me.

It's just that every day that I can't do the things I want to do is a reminder of kanswer.
A reminder of that horrible diagnosis and the aftermath of treatment.
A reminder of the side effects of chemotherapy and the after effects of surgery.

At the same time, these scars, these lost and mangled fingernails remind me that I entered into the battle with kanswer and I have emerged victorious from this round. They remind me that I had to make difficult decisions in order to win this battle. They remind me that I fought hard to stay alive and now I choose to live my life with more joy, more faith, more courage, and more determination than ever.  (Yes, chemo can cause you to lose your fingernails weeks after the therapy is completed. Chemotherapy is the gift that keeps on giving!)

It doesn't hurt, but it looks pretty dreadful.

Even though some days are definitely better than others,
I remain grateful that the worst of this phase of my life's journey is behind me.
I am grateful that there are far more good days than bad ones.
I am grateful for hope and a future.


Laura: One Day At A Time said...

Hi Gail. You are courageous, and beautiful. I hope your recovery from surgery and chemo will be complete, without issue, and final. I pray that God will continue to pour His love into you by keeping you strong in that hope, and by reminding you daily of your future. I know that God is faithful and able to do infinitely more than we might think or even ask. Thank you for sharing of yourself so authentically.

Paul Bock said...

Good Morning Gail:)

Again, as I always feel, that You, I and many others have sacrificed parts of our bodies in knowing that Life in itself is a "precious" gift not to be taken for granted.I know that You, like Me was told by our surgens what to expect by the decisions we choose. I feel that you have endured much more that I had to face but no less as tramatic. I chose to give up my prostate gland in return for Life. It was two years ago on May 13 that I underwent that surgery. I too was filled with many emotions about myself and manhood. If I had chosen the "wait & see" option I may not be here today. I didn't want to live my life knowing that at anytime I could I could have died because I chose not to have that removed. I feel that my Prostate, just as your Breasts does not Define who Gail and Paul are in this Life we share.I have many to thank for reassuring me of that, with Lisa being at the Top of that list,along with you Gail and most recently my Therapist. I am so proud of you Gail, Your Family and Friends that surround you and rally to you at this time in your Life. God,Family and Friends no doubt are the Best in helping us heal.
Until the next time Friend:)


heather l murphy said...

I love you dear friend. Thank you for sharing so beautifully and keeping it "real." I know you will be doing all of those things soon again and you are growing stronger every day. So good to acknowledge all of it...

Bev Long said...

Hi Gail. I just read your post from a few days ago. I have not had the same experiences as you have, but still just wish I could give you a hug. I'm so sorry those choices had to be made. And, I am so glad you are here and getting healthier.