Thursday, August 30, 2007

The Circus goes Mardi Gras

So it occurred to me that I've been showing by boobs to a lot of strangers lately. I mean A LOT! I was telling my friend Deb of the parade of physicians and residents and many others that have been examining (read: KNEADING) my breasts. Her response was, "Too bad it's not Mardi Gras. You'd have a great collection of beads." What a great way to poke fun at a clinical, albeit sometimes slightly humiliating experience. So here I am, diving in to my mothers coveted collection of beads (although she swears she didn't come by them the "traditional" way - Lord I hope not!!) Each one of these strands represents just the last 2 weeks of exposure. I'm going to continue my collection throughout this experience. I hope my neck is strong enough! Think the doctors will think me crazy if I start wearing them to my appointments?

I've had many comments lately about my positive 'attitude.' I've also been asked repeatedly, 'how are you really doing?' I keep telling people that I am REALLY doing very well. I can't explain it why I feel this happy and hopeful. Certainly most women diagnosed with breast cancer can't possibly feel this way. But since my diagnosis I feel like I've been awakened. Not really like getting a wake-up call, but I feel like I've been sleepwalking and now I'm very alert. I haven't felt any fear or trepidation, but I know that these feelings may come. I feel like I am so lucky to have found this early. Plus there are so many other horrible things going on in the world, and despite this little mole hill to get over, I am so fortunate. I think too that the support and love that I've received from everyone has just filled me with such joy. It is truly beyond any words that I have. Everyone should receive this love and support from everyone, everyday. I can't possibly imagine the kind of world it would be if everyone were filled to the brim of what I've felt everyday since my diagnosis.

My mother and I got into the "mortality" conversation today. She feels it's not fair to talk with me about it, but I completely disagree. It's something that I should talk about, you should talk about, we ALL should talk about. I firmly believe that this is not going to kill me. The statistics would back that assessment up. However, I could step off a curb tomorrow and be creamed by a Mac Truck. So we talked. I told her I intend to live well into my 90's (or longer) as both my grandmothers did. But I think that this, my first 'health crisis', has made me realize that I don't want to live for tomorrow. Looking back, I have no regrets and I think I've had a remarkable life. I was raised on an island in an amazing lifestyle, I've been exposed to many cultures, I've traveled extensively, I've sailed the oceans, I've sung and recorded CD's in Russia and Carnegie Hall, I've helped make movies, I've eaten some of the most amazing (and exotic) foods, I've drunk some incredible wine, I've taught young minds, I've saved a life or two, I've loved deeply, laughed loudly, cried unabashedly, and surrounded myself with truly amazing people. How could I possibly have regrets?! One of my most favorite movie lines keeps echoing in my mind during the last 10 days: "Get busy livin' or get busy dyin'." Wise words for all...


Deb in Atlanta said...

I'll give you 5 bucks if you wear your beads to a doctor's appointment. You get to choose the doctor. Gary will be the witness.

By the way, tell Gar he missed one. What happened to "King of Schmooze"?

Hugs and Kisses,
Deb in Atlanta

Stephanie said...

Your on sister!!