Over the past week I have had a million thoughts which I wanted to record and share. While this was the case, I found it hard to sit down and put anything to paper (or keys). I was then reminded by a friend of why I started this blog and how I had wanted to do so for some time; I am grateful for the reminder as I feel so much better after spending the time to write and share so here I am back to it.
I recently was up in the middle of the night after going to bed all too early. As I tried to sleep I instead ended up evaluating the question I get so often “How are you?” or “How do you feel?”. The first thing that came to mind was a cartoon movie I saw a few years ago, Inside Out, which I believe to be an incredible production of human emotions. Once I thought of this movie I realized that at this time I am truly experiencing all of my different emotions at one time and in turn the mix of thoughts and feelings strangely offset each other. While I don’t know if it is really the case, this mix helps me to think more rationally of how my life is changing. If the Inside Out characters were shown in my head right now, this would be their story:
- Joy: For the life I lead every day, for my support system at home and work and for finding this cancer at this stage along with my amazing St. Thomas treatment team.
- Anger: This week I know more of my diagnosis and the length of treatment, why has this happened and why now?
- Disgust: In how many women have had to endure these procedures.
- Sadness: For how some of my relationships will be forever impacted.
- Fear: In the unknown, in the loss of control for my own body and for my future.
From speaking with others I know that all of these emotions are completely natural. And at the end of the day, while I have no idea how I will feel tomorrow, today I feel good or actually GREAT despite all of the other thoughts…Joy wins.
The Update: Following a number of appointments this week I now have a plan for my treatment including options for the broader treatment which will be decided following surgery. Next week will be a bigger challenge and the beginning of the true life impact. On Thursday I will have a bilateral mastectomy. This will be followed by chemotherapy in 3-4 weeks (once I am healed enough) and then by hormonal treatments. The chemotherapy news this week was the most difficult to swallow, I had great hope that I would dodge this bullet.
Knowing is better at this time. Time allows me to think and prepare. Discover, Plan, Prepare, Execute – approaching life like a project makes this situation easier to swallow: Project Angela. To be continued…