Above you see a heavily blurred and effects studio messed-around-with image of my breast. The unaltered area of the photo shows one of the two areas where my doctor, as the nurses said, “dug around inside of” me. It hurts. A chunk of me is gone. My skin is angry and so is my heart.
Yeah. I’m mad. I don’t want to have cancer. I don’t want to be a 41 year old “survivor.” I mean, sure, it’s better than the alternative, but still. I’m not a pink ribbon wearer anymore, not a warrior. I’m a person who’s hanging out on her couch with an ice pack because I hurt. I feel like I should be healed by now. I should be up and doing all sorts of things. I should, should, should. And I hate that I think that.
So now I wait. I wait to see what the pathology of this tumor and my nodes says. I wait to see if I have the stupid and life altering gene deletion which will mean a bilateral mastectomy. I wait and drink cocoa and hang out on my couch.
A friend called me a hero today. I have never felt more like a phony. Cancer does not make me feel like a hero. It makes me feel like less than I was before. Less of a human, less of a mother, less of a woman. I am literally less of a person than I was, about a tennis ball sized mass less. Still, I don’t feel like a whole person minus tennis ball, I feel like a half person. A less person.
That’s where I am, kids. It’s not a great place or one which makes a lot of sense, but it’s real. Next time should be more whole.