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2 time ovarian cancer Survivor, Advocate for ovarian cancer awareness & research, Teacher of Zen Method Tai Chi, Blogger, sharing the wonderment and power of essential oils, proud fan of Cathe Friedrich's workouts, Reiki practitoner, A Course in Miracles student, paper crafter

Friday, March 18, 2011

A Year Ago Today...

Today is one of those weird cancer anniversaries for me. A year ago today I found out from my radiation doctor that I could start radiation treatment on the next Monday. It took over a month to get to that point. An exhausting, scary, frustrating month not only for me but for my family, too. Although it may not seem like a big deal to you, a year ago today it was HUGE scary step forward.

Today my medical life is in a different holding pattern. My latest PAP smear results are 'within normal limits'. Relief! I'm still waiting for a callback from my oncologist's nurse with my blood lab results. I'm assuming, perhaps foolishly, that no news is good news. that's how the medical world works in America, unfortunately. There just has to be a study about how stressful it is to wait for test results that never come... But I digress.

A couple days ago my breast center called me and said they needed to schedule a breast ultrasound. No, they didn't find any masses or anything else suspicious. The ultrasound is necessary because of my cancer history. So, it's preventative. Cautious. And scary and unsettling, too. Maybe that's why the anniversary stuck out in my head today.

Here's my 3/18/10 journal entry: (if you'd like to read my journals leading up to radiation and through radiation click here and here)

March 18, 2010
Greetings all! Late yesterday afternoon the radiation doctor finally called me back with news. The original simulation is going to work, yay!! So, my appointment for the final set-up Friday afternoon is a go. Yay for progress!! I will be able to, finally, start treatment on Monday. 
This cancer journey is tough. These are self-centered days for me. I am so grateful for all of your strong shoulders and Spirits that carry me through each day and each battle. Thank you for allowing me to do what's best for me and my healing journey, and loving me through this selfishness each in your own ways. Your strength and love is God's Love in action. 

March 18, 2010 (very late at night)
I should be asleep right now, but sleep and peace are escaping me. This is totally crazy, because I love to sleep and some people would say that I EXCEL in sleep. I know from my readings, my own spiritual journey and hearing about other people's spiritual journeys that God's peace is there for the taking and in fact surrounds all of us all the time. We've just got tap into it.  I've tried to tap into it tonight, but I just can't seem to allow it all the way in. Self Reiki was good...I hadn't made the time for it in months, literally. It was soothing and peaceful, but for some reason the peace didn't settle in for the night. I am out of balance with myself, and am trying desperately to quiet my mind down enough so that I can find that balance, that peace within myself. 
I am afraid. I'm afraid of being afraid, because I know fear is a negative emotion and I know that the last thing I need right now is to draw negative energy to myself. Yet the fear is there lurking in the back of soul. Will it hurt, even though the doctor says it won't? Will cause embarrassing side effects? I have this crazy visions of soiling myself at work- which is totally crazy, right? What if I can't maintain my weight? The technician made a really big deal out of telling me how important it is that I don't gain or lose weight during these 6 weeks of treatment. Usually that's not a problem for me at all, but you know how Murphy's Law works it's way in at the most inopportune times. 
I feel as if tomorrow's final set up appointment is like senior finals in school. It's the end, and the beginning. So much has gone into this final appointment...almost a month's worth of questions, waiting,  changes, then more questions, wondering and waiting. And now it's here and I have to face it. I can't push it out of my mind and pretend it's not happening or dream that it doesn't need to happen. 
The treatment phase begins tomorrow. I feel less ready than I did earlier today, but it doesn't matter how ready I am emotionally or mentally. I know that when the time comes I will face this square in the eye and I will stand tall and strong when it matters. I learned this from my mother, who learned it from her mother.  I need this treatment to heal my body. 
Somehow, even through my fear and unfortunate insomnia tonight,  I have hope. I hope of being declared CURED. I have the hope of living in balance again. Meanwhile I will trust that this hope will bring me to the people and places that I need to find to return me to a peaceful balance.

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