Today is six weeks to the day after my bilateral mastectomy, and it's the day I saw my medical oncologist to find out the results of the OncotypeDX Breast Recurrence Score Report. When my medical oncologist came in the exam room, her first words were "Good news!!" That's what I was hoping to hear. I … Continue reading Breast cancer Round 2: Positive news!
On this day at this time (December 5 at 1 PM) I was home or about to be home after a breast lumpectomy and node removal. I don't recall ever wondering during that time whether I'd still be around in a decade. Even though that wasn't a thought back then, here I am now, 10 … Continue reading Celebrating 10 years cancer-free
The short answer to my title question? It depends. Yeah, that's not the answer I want, either. What I've found after two surgeries this year and cancer treatment (two rounds of chemo, surgery, radiation) six years ago is that the doctors will give you the best-case scenario. But they will also say, "It depends. Everyone … Continue reading So . . . how long does surgery or cancer treatment recovery take?
All of us have been through some kind of wounding situation that put us on a healing path. It might have been a badly sprained ankle, a deep cut that required lots of stitches, surgery of some sort, a heart attack, the death of a friend or loved one, a divorce, cancer, a lost friendship, … Continue reading Why does healing take SO LONG?
I'm learning that unpredictability is going to be a big part of my life now as a middle school teacher. It's kind of like four years ago when I was going through cancer treatments. One of my big struggles was the unpredictability then, too. How would the side effects manifest during chemo treatment? How would the radiation affect me … Continue reading Teaching Middle School, Week 3: Not only the weather was unpredictable!
About three months ago, I got the feeling I was completing a cycle. That something is finishing within me, that something is shifting, that I'm about to emerge into something new. I realized that it was seven years ago that I quit teaching and embarked on a new life. I also realized that I've read … Continue reading A 7 Year Cycle: Failure and Fear
And in the midst of that I've overlooked beautiful sunrises. I've gulped down coffee and food while thinking of totally unrelated situations. I've worried about things that are beyond my control.
I've forgotten too much of what I learned on my cancer journey.
Just a quick post today to acknowledge the three-year anniversary of my breast cancer diagnosis. I was terrified that day three years ago. I numbly went through an MRI and PET scan that week (or the next. It all ran together). And then port surgery and right into chemo for eight weeks. And a lumpectomy … Continue reading Another anniversary
Everybody has them, those one-year anniversaries marking significant events in our lives. A wedding. A death. A birth. A move. A new job. A retirement. Typically we mark beginnings and endings. Those of us who are cancer survivors mark them both. Ask any of us the date we got our diagnosis. We can tell you … Continue reading Those One-year Anniversaries
“When we protect ourselves so we won't feel pain, that protection becomes like armor, like armor that imprisons the softness of of the heart.” ― Pema Chödrön, When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times I read this Pema Chodron book several years ago, and her image of armor has stuck with me. I've … Continue reading Taking off my armor