Slap A Bow On That Bitch

Posted: October 22nd, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off

Being a breast cancer survivor is messy. There’s no way around it. You don’t get to walk away from cancer all neat and clean. Stand back, look at your journey and declare, “I’m all done now. Slap a blow on that bitch!”

Today I’m just five days shy of my two year survivor anniversary mark, the day I purposely had a team of medical experts rid my body of two diseased breasts. Yup, as of October 28, 2012 it will have been two years.

I should be well on my way to moving on with my life by now, right? I should be able to deal with the constant sense of pressure from the well meaning entire month of October being about breast cancer awareness by now, right? I should be strong enough not to feel so raw, that I end up feeling mowed over by other people’s words and actions by now, right?

But I don’t, and, I’m not done. As of this very morning, I’ll be shoving a Xanax down my gullet while I eat my bowl of Cheerios with Almond Milk. I’ll slap some makeup onto my face, smile, pop another Xanax and then have my dad drive me to the plastic surgeon’s office — for a third try at tattooing areolas onto my fake boobs.

Even though the double thick layer of scar tissue will be numbed up with numerous shots of Lidocaine — it really only makes the tattoo needles bearable on the scar tissue. I ain’t gonna lie, it’s painful as all get out. Hell, I’ll probably pop another Xanax right before going in for the tattoos too. I’m going to get as legally high as I possibly can. Screw “The Breakfast of Champions.” This is my “Survivor Brunch.”

Two years out and I was still making attempts towards getting my post-breast cancer life back to “old normal.” But, I’ve come to realize, there is no “old normal” anymore. My life is never going to be the same again, ever. And, people around me need to realize that fact.

I guess I had too high of an expectation upon myself — that I was so strong, I would bounce right back to my “old normal” after most of my breast reconstruction was done. But, this past weekend I had a rude awakening. I’m not that strong. I haven’t bounced right back. I’m physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally drained.

No longer am I that scrappy football player that will run after and tackle their own teammate, who was running in for a touchdown, in the wrong direction. That right now I only have enough inner strength to just stand there, allow tears to flow from my heart, and let them run in the wrong direction.

As a survivor, I’ve owned that I’m still tired, very tired. I’m tired enough that I just don’t have it in me to be the bigger person and chase somebody down to try and fix something. I’m tired enough to only want to deal with what is a necessity to my overall life right now. I’m so tired, I am weak in spirit and tenacity. And you know what? That’s okay.

If I truly matter, someone will love me enough to pick up the slack and help me stumble along this messy path of becoming a survivor. Until I’ve arrived at the point of being a stronger “new normal.”

Owning that as a survivor, that you’re not a shiny foiled wrapped box ready to have a “get over it” bow slapped onto you yet, well, it’s humbling. Worse yet, it feels downright selfish — that you’re not up to fighting for something you cherish. And, downright frightening that because of that, you could lose something you deeply cherish. Love.

We survivors might look, for the most part, like we’re back up to snuff — so everyone can get back to our lives of being “old normal” again. But, we’re not. We’re a tattered box, haphazardly wrapped — working towards a “new normal.”

I say, “Own that! Slap a bow on that bitch!”



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