Or reliving 2008. I've been reading my old blog Well It's Not Going to Kill You. GOD 2oo8 was hard!
However it has inspired me to start blogging again. So look for more in this space.
I recently discovered by way of the tv show Parenthood that my breast cancer journey is not yet over. Last week at the end of the show one of the main characters was diagnosed with breast cancer. I immediately started crying and proceeded to cry through the previews for the next show. I remember telling Larry I didn't know if I'd be able to watch this week's show. Fortunately I had an appt with Dr. Sanity before the show.
I hadn't been able to figure out why the character's diagnosis hit me so profoundly. Talking with Dr. Sanity I realized I'd never cried when I was diagnoses. I was too shocked to cry and was immediately thrown into the medical model where feelings aren't covered very well.
I was able to watch this week's episode, there was enough humor to offset the drama. But it was very creepy when Kristina (the character) was told her tumor was small and up against the chest wall because that's exactly what I was told.
It's now been six years and 4 months since I was diagnosed and I'm just learning the journey has yet to end. So now I'll walk through a different part of my journey, recalling the past but looking toward the future.
I've been referring to myself as Dr. Sanity's clinging vine since the first day I sat down in her office almost 4 long, grueling, painfilled years ago. In the beginning I was seeing her 2 or 3 times a week and talking to her on the phone when I wasn't with her. If she went out of town I would literally fall apart. It's been a long strange ride let me tell you.
About 6 months ago I went from twice a week in her office to once a week and not falling apart every time she had to leave town. It was a great step forward. Now I'm taking the next step seeing her only every other week. It feels so good to be stable and standing on my own sanity.
I can thank Dr. Sanity enough for her support, persistence, love and guidence. She has been my rock while I was regathering myself into some semblance of a human being.
I've been on a purging streak the last couple of weeks - the pantry, the spice cabinet, the stairway bookshelves and the living room bookshelves. It's been very cleansing. Kitchen stuff and duplicate spices given away, a carton of books to go to the used bookstore and a large bag to go to the friends of the library. Left in the house to tackle the bedroom bookshelf and the huge pile of books on the floor in front of it and my closet. I've lost almost 30 pounds so I know there's stuff that will no longer fit YEAH.
Then comes the big tackle outside. The great wall of Mill Creek is covered in wild blackberries yummy to eat but not pleasing on my gardener eye. In fact the entire area around the house is full of blackberries. That's what comes of living in the forest. Any time you rest the blackberries invade. Little does Larry know that he's going to weed eat the hill so I can Round Up the lovely berries.
I'm able to do all this because I've spent the last four years on Dr. Sanity's couch reclaiming my life after the nasty depression. Yes for talk therapy and psych drugs.
or the blessed lack there of. I've battled it for years now, to the edge of suicide more than once and back. I never want to hear anyone say "oh you can just snap out of it". No, you can't trust me I tried my very best to snap out of it. With the help of a wonderful therapist and drugs depression is at bay. I won't say it's behind me because I don't think that's true. But it doesn't control my life like it has in the past. It's nice to see color again, worry about my garden again, want to participate in life again.
Bless you Dr. Sanity and Abilify without the 2 of you I wouldn't be here.
That's what Dr. Sanity and I explored this week. After cancer, perforated bowel, Larry's gator trick and Mason's death I feel that I'm finally getting myself back, you know, nearly normal. Whatever that means.
Dr. Sanity suggested that normal is an ever changing thing. I decided that normal means whatever you decide it means and can only belong to you. No one else can decide what your normal is, they just need to worry about getting their own normal.
Is sweet to see.
I was a member of the now retired, we accomplished our goal, Advisory Council for the Sutter Santa Rosa Women' Health Center. Yes it's a mouthful. One of our many goals was to establish an Integrative Health program for women with breast cancer and ultimatly to all women with cancer. The idea was to provide alternative therapy for women going through chemo and radiation. Alternate therapy includes massage, Jin Shin Jyusto, art therapy, accupunture, etc.
I am so proud to say that yesterday I went to the 'new site' warming and was overwhelmed. Like a planted seed our idea has bloomed full flower to it's own dedicated space with beautiful treatment rooms with soft colors, piped in music and custom art. It's also expanded to serve women with all types of cancer and even cared for its first man this week.
Congratulations to the wonderful and dedicated staff, donors and Sutter for growing this program
As you all know I'm a breast cancer survivor as such I pay attention to breast cancer in the news.
Today the Susan G. Komen Foundation withdraw their funding for Planned Parenthood that is used for breast cancer screening. That they withdrew their funding is appalling but they did it for purely political reasons.
Please support your local breast cancer charities rather than Komen in the future.
Yes, another 6 month ultrasound that looks great! A truly great Thanksgiving gift. I'll have another 6 months "beause of your history" quotes McD and I'll probably graduate to once a year. I love science.
That's a apt description for my nerves tonight, sizzling at the edges. You see I have my 6 month breast ultrasound tomorrow. Now intellectually I know that the scan won't show anything it shouldn't but my nerves are not quite so easily convinced.
This afternoon I talked to Dr. Sanity and assured her I had talked myself out of being scared about tomorrow. I just forgot to tell my nerve endings and my stomach. Let's see the countdown ends 19 hours exactly (as I type) tomorrow. Then thankfully an appointment with Dr. Sanity follows. God bless Dr. Sanity she really does keep me sane, well she and Abilify.