Monday, April 6, 2015

sitting on a cactus

"Just because you’re given a cactus doesn’t mean you have to sit on it."

I feel like I’ve been doing a lot of sitting on the cacti I’ve been given. Sometimes it’s hard not to, especially when new ones keep popping up. I realized the only way to get rid of a cactus is to completely uproot it. I tried chopping them down at the surface but the stumps kept growing back.

I have great self-awareness and am very good at pinpointing what I need and what I don’t. I’ve been flailing hard since December, partial blame goes to what has been going on inside and growing in my body (I'm hypersensitive to when things are off inside) and finally processing things. So enjoy another lesson from my life before you have to experience it the hard way yourself: don’t put off dealing with things and taking care of yourself.
“If you don’t have time to do it right the first time you better have time to do it again.”

I recently just had a lot of tough things happen in the same week and got forced into a decision to fix or fold. When bad times happen, it usually causes other garbage to resurface too. There are some issues that have lingered and I've seen how they interfere with me having a consistent sense of “normal”. What I haven’t been so in tune with is the source of these problems. I love fixing things, but I gotta know what actually needs fixing to be able to do it. Of course, I also have to have time and energy to heal. Scratch that.. I have to MAKE time. 

I’ve taken the last few weeks to do just that. I’ve had some health decisions to make before anything else, which is something I have been putting aside. So I eliminated my everyday distractions and sat in a space to make these decisions. For example, it was encouraged by my doctors to have a total hysterectomy right away. It’s a surgery that would have bring some tough side effects. So the decision I have made for now is to wait. I don’t know how long I’m going to wait but I’m not in a hurry at the moment. From my last surgery, my ovaries are free of cancer and anything else I wouldn’t want in there, so I see that as having bought me some time. I will haven more frequent surveillance than before, to keep a close watch and allow for early detection.

I appreciate all of the feedback I’ve been given on this decision, and I realize my choice is against what 99% of you have suggested, but ultimately this is what feels right. In the past few weeks I have felt the happiest and healthiest I have in a very long time. I’ve been able to exercise and go for ocean swims. I feel like the weight of constantly worrying about my health has been lifted and I would really just like to continue to enjoy this feeling. Knowing I have some time to just feel good (and my age!) is really exciting to me. I also am enjoying alternative treatments and preventative routes and will continue to until I no longer feel confident in them. What would be the point of all of this living if I wasn’t enjoying it?

With some changes that have recently happened in my life, it felt like now would be the best time to have another surgery. I have the time for it and there is a lack of major responsibilities that need me. At first, it really seemed like the time is now. After some thought I’ve decided that now is the time to FEEL GOOD. I have time to make time to be healthy and active and happy. So much of living is mental for me. When the fears of more cancer gets back into my head, then I will take action. But I’m not feeling afraid right now and I’m going to take a break from the hospital scene. 

I’ve really done a great job of staying present focused like I had intended before my surgery. My father was 100% correct. I can handle today’s problems. I can’t handle today and tomorrow’s problems today though. One day at a time. 2015 has been surprisingly tough, but ultimately a good lesson in faith. 

I understand that many of you are concerned that putting off surgery means I’m not taking my long term health into consideration and “just want me to be here” more than anything else. But I feel like that is exactly what I’m doing. It’s so much harder to find joy and purpose in life when you’re spending all your time recovering in bed. While I have had plenty of ups in the past two years, I have also had moments I wouldn’t even wish on a Red Wings fan. Those times are what contributed to me losing some of that “zest for life" or whatever you want to call it. I want to want to be around too! I don’t want a life to be defined by illness and I don’t want it to be the driving force of all my actions. I feel myself getting physically stronger every day and my heart and head are great. Enjoying those feelings for a little is the right thing to do right now. Being in a good headspace is making it easier to take care of myself too. 

I just feel peachy keen right now.

While I still have the option to choose, I will. One decision down. So this is me, getting off the cactus and giving you all permission to push me off of it if you see me headed that way again.

cheers, yew and happy sunshine days!

*apologies to anyone who has experienced any worry over my quiet time

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