I called myself a writer the other day and I don’t know why. I haven’t written in one year and one month. Yet here I am, now writing. Part of the reason why I didn’t write is because I didn’t want to deal with my crap. Sure, I was busy. But when writing is your form of therapy and/or acknowledgement of your crap (thoughts, problems, even blessings) and you don’t want to deal with them, you don’t write. I don’t know where to begin because it’s been so long, but I’ll give it a try. Because I’m a writer; I write.
I have cancer. Or I had cancer. My “baseline mammogram” came out clear. But both my radiologist and oncologist tell me that even though the surgery was successful, I still have little flecks of cancer in my left breast. The flecks are why I have to take Tamoxifen, an anti-estrogen pill every day for 5 years. Oh, I had (have?) mixed ductal and lobular carcinoma. The tumor was only 8.8mm (as if the size really matters because CANCER WAS IN MY BODY), stage 1A, grade one, estrogen-receptor-positive, and none of the 4 lymph nodes that they took out of my armpit were positive for cancer. So I was lucky. Really? It doesn’t feel that way sometimes. And I wonder how the other “survivors” feel about the crap of their treatment. I STILL have numbness and swelling in my armpit, pluck marks from the radiation, and am STILL exhausted to the point of daily 2 hour naps. And my surgery was 175 days ago, 5 months and 23 days ago. My radiation ended just before Christmas (I’m not getting up to look at my calender) and I started the Tamoxifen on December 23. That I know because I wanted to wait til after Christmas to start it (because of the horrible side effects) and my oncologist told me I couldn’t. Enough about my cancer, it’s been a year, lots of crap.
I wrote last February that my mother had major surgery and that I had been helping her by doing housework. That continues to this day. In fact, the day before my own lumpectomy, I was at her house cleaning up and doing her laundry because I knew she wouldn’t do it while I was recovering. And she didn’t. When I went back 2 weeks after my surgery, both her and my father were out of clean clothes. Now I go every other week. Between February and July (my diagnosis), I was at my parents house at least twice a week. They have extensive landscaping that requires the kind of manual labor, that neither of them can do, and they do pay rather well. Ironically, it was because I was there trimming the trees that I found out I had (have?) cancer. I tore my rotator cuff trimming their trees, went to the doc, the doc scolded me for not getting regular checkups, wrote the prescription for the mammogram…Either way, my parents still need my help and in addition to the healing cancer pain, my rotator cuff is still not healed because it’s the SAME side as the breast cancer. Ugh! More on my parents and my mother’s unwillingness to go to therapy later…lots of crap!
Last February I also wrote about someone who I called “said guy” and our new relationship. Well, he’s not new anymore and it’s been over a year. He was (and continues to be) very supportive about my illness, recovery, and even all of my crap. I’m going to name him Michael. Michael has his own crap: his dead wife who he can’t get over. Mainly, he feels as if he’s cheating on her with me and is afraid to get hurt again. But those are his issues. Mine are that they were only married all of 6 years, he KNEW she was sick (pancreatic cancer) before he married her, she’s been dead for 6 years, and he needs to let it go. But I can’t make him do that or even say it. As wonderful as he is, we are, he needs to get off his ass and start figuring things out so we can BOTH be in the same relationship. He knows this. Oh, but he’s awesome and I’m just venting. He’s making baby steps, they’re just too small for my impatience. And there’s more…
My best friend Marie’s ex-husband (and my friend Walter) passed away just after my surgery. He was the topic of my most viewed post: https://everyonehascrap.wordpress.com/2013/12/16/my-best-friends-crap-her-husbands-penis-and-whore-and-me/. But he was also like a brother to me if you read the next post. He took me to school every day, we went to parties together, he came and stayed with me while I was in college, moved me several times, and he would do anything for me. Not kidding. He died at work of a massive heart attack. And it hit me hard. No more Walter to depend on. Even though he was living a shady life and being an ass, he was still there. Now he’s not. It sucks.
And there’s more, a lot more. My kid Matthew continues to amaze me every day, his 23 year old sister (my ex-step daughter) moved in to “help” while I had surgery and doesn’t appear to be moving out any time soon or even helping for that matter, I’m jobless and poor, looking for a job I can actually do, I now can communicate with dead people (long story), but have a ton of supportive friends and family. So while things look like they’re down at this point, they can only get better. I’m now ready to acknowledge all of my crap. Because I’m a writer; I write.