Sometimes that year feels like a blur.
Sometimes an eternity.
But always something worthy of being grateful.
When I was diagnosed, my first thought was “mastectomy”.
My last thought was dying.
Because I refused to let myself go there.
Now having experienced the mastectomy, the reconstruction, and the aftermath of cancer and major surgery, I can say the only thing harder than surviving cancer is death.
I was supposed to have a second and third phase of my reconstruction.
I need it but I can’t bring myself to go through surgery any time soon.
followed by a lumpectomy,
followed by a failed port placement, followed by port placement,
followed by chemo,
followed by a mastectomy and reconstruction,
followed by heart surgery…
But to be honest,
I’m not done with surgery.
I wish I was.
The side effects from cancer and surgery a year later are less intense but still vivid.
I’m still horribly forgetful,
have generalized weakness everywhere,
struggle with insomnia and restless leg syndrome,
have pain in my joints,
still have low blood pressure and high heart rate,
and am anemic.
The gift that keeps on giving.
And for that
I am grateful.
No matter how bad I feel or how worried I get thinking it might return,
I try to remind myself often that I’m still here.
And I remember my pink sisters who aren’t.
And I try not to take my life for granted.
Because you just never know.