Sunday, August 28, 2011

"I could do 3 more"

Sometimes I surprise myself.  For instance...........signing up for a 5K just a few days before, asking my sisters and Scott to join Team Lumps and Lipstick (making impromptu t-shirts), and walking--for the first time in my life, a 5K.  It isn't that I didn't think I could walk 3.1 miles, it is that I never would have wanted to.  I would have had to sweat in front of other people and push myself out of a comfort zone that I felt pretty comfy in.  But I did it.  The 5K benefited Northwest Hope and Healing, a Seattle based organization that supports women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer--it just seemed right.  And I can tell you, this was the first of many.  I am shocked how much I enjoyed it! I look forward to being able to jog one, once I am able to start to jog (I have to be cleared by my physical therapist).  A year ago I was laying in bed bloaty and crazy with chemo, today I walked a 5K.

I am hoping that taking this step will help instill something in me that I am strong enough to do this, because sometimes it is hard to remember.

front of our shirts

back of my shirt

Team Lumps and Lipstick
best sisters ever

I was nervous and had to pee a lot before it started

good thing there were tons of honey buckets

I was faking, see the coffee in my right hand...

"this girl"

Greenaway Girls

Thursday, August 25, 2011

grieve the dream.

Today would have been a Herceptin infusion. BUT IT ISN"T!!!!!!!!!!!! I am done and done.  And loving it!  I have some great photos to upload, but my camera is being stubborn, so look for those this weekend.  I am making a promise to myself to post more often. I love writing, but hate the days when I feel like it is something to check off my to-do list, so, like with most things on that list, I avoid it.  Here are a few entries that haven't seen the light yet, thought I would share them.  I will do an update when I post photos this weekend. 

Grieving the dream.
This girl, still overwhelmed.  I am struck by the amazing amount of work it is to do daily activities and then try to add something extra to the pot.  My work life is great, done and done. But it is the running of the house, the trying to organize things, change things up, getting ready for a new chapter--I just feel like I am always legging behind.   I jumped in and was going to start my book proposal, but I got overwhelmed and dropped it.  I can't seem to grasp onto something long enough to commit myself. There are days when even the laundry seems too much.

This is crazy.

"the grieving of the dream is just as tough" shut. the. front. door. There it is, that is what I am doing! I can't remember where I heard it, but I sent myself an email to remind me.  I am grieving for what I was able to do before. I still want to be that person, I want to be where I was, I loved the me from a year ago.  In certain situations I feel like her again, I want so badly to be that version of me.  But I am not, the dreams and plans I had before have all changed, they all have different ways now to attain them if they are even still available.  I feel like I am drowning trying to figure out how to do them, which to do,or if I even want to do them.

I feel like the last puppy of a liter, everyone gives lots of love and attention when they are there, but in the end the puppy is still alone. (wow...I am not sure if that could get any more sappy or 3rd grade, but it came to my mind so I am putting it out there).  Read: no one can change the mind games I play with myself, there is no one who can give me the energy that I lack, no one that can tell me which direction to go...except maybe Dr. Seuss. 

It will suck the life right out of you.
My bedroom was a happy place. I loved taking naps, that usually involved a bed, there enters the bedroom. Lots of great things happen in a bedroom (yep, that is one of them, move on), you close your day by saying goodnight, you greet each morning, it should be a safe place, a place of relaxation and comfort. Mine makes me sick to my stomach. I have been sick for almost a week now with a horrible cold, and have been stuck in bed for the first time as a "healthy" person. I was brought back into that helpless feeling. The romance has been pulled from the room, the safety-net ripped away, and even the walls remind me of cancer.

Some of my life has become a struggle to let go of the past, so I can shape the future. But I feel like I am being hindered by objects--and the feelings attached to objects. I want a serene room where I can nap, where I can feel relaxed and where I can do other bedroom type things. The feeling I have in the pit of my stomach remains there. I spent a majority of the last year staring at the fucking dresser, the walls, the ugly curtains, and trying to get comfortable with these fucking pillows. A year. And now I am expecting it to all of a sudden be this place of comfort--come on! This process is like walking in mud, well more like drowning in it.
I am in a holding pattern. I have this continuous thought stream where I ask myself what I want to do for the rest of my life. Not just what do I want to do for a living--but for my life. I think people who haven't been forced to face death view life as something they are just given--there aren't words to express how terrifying it is when you are dealt the card that can take it all away in an instant. I may not live to see 90, and there are so many things I want to do, this internal struggle is like a cancer. I feel pressure to succeed and do everything I can and do it all NOW, because I don't know how long I will be able to do it. I know this is ridiculous, but it is another one of those internal head games I am getting so good at playing.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

this girl, done with infusions

Today was my last Herceptin infusion! That means NO MORE CHEMO for this girl. No more infusions in my port, no more, no more no more.  All I have left is my great Tamoxifen for the next 5 years, but people have popped pills for worse.

Last night I had my soul recharged--I was able to see some lovely ladies (and a tiny one) that I haven't seen in too long. I was fortunate enough to listen to Lix Lamoreux ( and recharge my roots. It was a great 'herceptin eve'. We wrote some poetry using word lists and the prompt "this girl, she...". 

Here is my soul, recharged:

This girl, she...
has been disected, ripped and turned into a disaster.

This girl, she...
has filled her veins with poison in the name of health.

This girl, she...
is endlessly reminded of death due to the scars near her heart.

This girl, she...
finds dizzying comfort in a dinner plate.

This girl, she...
says thanks for the dark times--
leaving room for the light.

This girl, she...
thirsts to recognize the girl in the mirror.

This girl, she wants to be whole again.
This girl, she tries not to escape grace.


This girl, she...dove into a pit of winter and hot iron, teasing the bubbles from the ruby with her dark fingers crossed behind her back.

Unremarked peonies telling of stories of endless medicine.

Snails profound, she dramatically writes of death--
she, this woman, closes again--unconformed, undetermined, and unremarkable.

Crossing into panic she examines conversations and takes shelter in the light.

This girl, she is latched to the familiar, knotted to the ground--

yet is denied comfort.


This girl, she....bounces.

knotted for thirst, she recognizes the faith in a cowboy.

she crosses in conversation until someone breaks a dinner plate.

she is boxed and loved--burnt by the iron of rest and rejuvenation.

she is subtle medicine, telling of health and regrets.

she is skeptical of examination, yet so familiar.

she is a soul surging with thanks and bisected emotion.

she is comfort, dizzying in identity.

this girl, she is me.