Bless My Heart

the improvement of a southern girl

Cancer – A (hopefully forever) Retrospect

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  • It has been 2 1/2 months since my surgery.
  • It’s been 4 months since I was diagnosed.
  • 4 months is a long time to feel sorry for yourself.

This school year started off promising. My fourth year at my current position and my tenth year teaching. I enrolled in a grad class. The Man and I took a wonderful vacation to Colorado. Abby started soccer and Savannah became our tiny little dancer. Everything was cruising right along; so well, in fact, that I’ll go ahead and admit that we had begun trying to conceive a third child (I know. We’re crazy. But we love the lil’ buggers).

I hosted a family birthday party on a Saturday at my house. I was happy. The following Tuesday I got the call.

My happy little world came crashing down around my feet.

So here I am. Looking at this thing in the rearview, praying that it stays there. Just now being able to turn my head around straight and start looking forward again. It’s hard, to be perfectly honest. My thigh is still numb in spots, but I’m getting used to it. My incision site is still hard and swollen, but it has gone down from a baseball to a golfball-sized area, so that’s good. I am trying to begin exercising again this week. Previous attempts were greeting by larger swelling and soreness, so I laid off of it. Can’t do that anymore, I’m getting quite soft and fluffy. Good for a pillow, not so much for me.

I’ve missed my blog, but I knew I couldn’t post again until I made this post.. and this post is hard for me. I’ve been putting it off. Postponing it, I think, because writing this means that I’m through feeling sorry for myself. It’s my acceptance stage.

I totally went through all stages of grief. Denial. Anger. Bargaining. Depression. Acceptance. No, I did not lose a loved one, but as a friend posted on Facebook, I lost what I thought was a healthy body. That’s totally true. A body I just pushed through a half marathon. A body I had been actively training for years. A body that I tried very hard to eat properly for. I felt like that body failed me, because it did. It put me in a position to have to worry if my kids were going to have to grow up without a mommy. It made me have a very difficult conversation with my husband about the reality of my possible outcome. It made me make myself sick with worry. It made me doubt everything I knew that was true.

After my surgery, I didn’t get a sense of relief of it being “over”. It was still very much there in my distorted leg. Only as my wound heals and fades, will the hurt go away as well. The hurt of being betrayed by life.

Like a slap in the face, really.

Who am I to think that my life is perfect? Who am I to get comfortable in my surroundings? Who am I to be settled into a routine? These thoughts have been swirling around my head for months now. What a wake up call.

In reality,  we are all just a breath away from our world crashing down at our feet. A stranger falls asleep at the wheel and drifts over the line just as you cross paths. Crash. You go to work, like you do everyday, and the boss tells you they have no room for you anymore. Crash. Your spouse sits down beside you one day and tells you that they never loved you. Crash. You get distracted while shopping one day and look up to find that your child has disappeared. Crash.

You get my point.

Life is to be enjoyed, yes, but not to get comfortable in. People are not to be taken for granted. Ideas and dreams are not to be left in your head. Lovers, friends, family and children are meant to be loved by every ounce of your being. YOU are to be loved by YOU. And you must lean on God. Always.

So here I am. Post deadly-little-cancer-cell-that-luckily-was-caught-early-enough. I’m gonna check my body out for other little spots for the rest of my life. I’m going to accept my pasty white skin and accent it with muscles and cute clothes instead of cancer causing pigment. Okay, maybe I’m going to invest in really good SPF and fake tanners. I’m going to get my body back in shape and then maybe start making that baby 😉

I’m starting again, because we are all blessed with the ability to do so.

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Author: blessmyheart

I'm like any other 30-something woman that works full time as a teacher, has two kids, a husband, 3 pets, and has battled cancer. ...among other things. I have things to say, sometimes. This is where I say them.

8 thoughts on “Cancer – A (hopefully forever) Retrospect

  1. Awesome post, Juli. Just amazing.

  2. much love from me to you. looking forward to a 5k later this year with you. 🙂

  3. I love this post…
    Are you still coming to TMEA? I have a time for us to get together for a sip…
    You are wise beyond your years… you just don’t know it yet 🙂

  4. Thank you for sharing. You r a true inspiration to me and I am sure many others.
    Love you and happy you are looking forward again.
    Xoxo

  5. Kinda like the book Jerod gave me for Christmas.

    It’s not the things we plan for that matter and define us, it’s the things we don’t and can’t plan for. And it’s how we handle those unforeseen things that define who we are and what we become in life – that show our true character.

    Just know that we love you and think you’re doing great. And besides, all we have or nieces on both sides – so who’s to say there still couldn’t be room for a nephew. (though we’ll probably get slammed with the boys given the way things are going)

  6. This is happening to me at the moment. Same site same profession we were even trying for a third child. I’m in a different country though. I’m comforted by your story. Thank you

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