Monday, 15 October 2012

'Pinktober'

October is a very difficult month for me. It's the month I was diagnosed in and the month in which I was told that I had no other option than to prepare for a full, possibly radical mastectomy. Even though I'd had weeks of tests and lots of hints based on the demeanor of those looking after me, I still wasn't fully prepared to hear those fateful words "I'm so sorry but it's definitely cancer" words that I will remember for the rest of my life. This was the day that my life changed. . . forever. There was no going back from here and I was so scared about what lay ahead and, as it turned out, completely justified in being so scared.

I'm still scared.

Cancer has turned my life upside down, it has in many ways, stolen my life away from me. Treatment made my underlying health conditions much worse than they were and has therefore robbed me of many things I enjoyed doing - that were an integral part of who I am. People's perceptions of me have changed. I think a lot of them see me as some kind of victim and do you know what I hate the most? It's the fact that in many ways I am exactly that - a victim. It's a hard thing both to deal with and overcome on a personal level but in many ways even harder to change how others see you and therefore how they deal with you.

I am so conflicted! I love the fact that family and friends are so anxious to look after me, it's wonderful to realise just how much they care. What is hard though is seeing the pity in other people's eyes especially those who are not close family and friends. Victim-hood tends to stick no matter how hard you try to escape it.

Of course part of the problem is that I keep on reinforcing the fact that I need to be cared for. I'm so tired all the time, I am unsteady on my feet when tired, I lose my balance where normally I would be sure-footed and yes, like a frail little old lady, I have falls that makes it look like I can't go out on my own and still be safe.

Cancer? Yes, I hate it, what it's done to me, what it's done to those around me and no matter what I try and do to forget about it, it is here to stay. . .

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