You're right, I have been ignoring you. When I have the wherewithal to focus on more than one thing at a time cancer with its lousy effects is not what I want to think about.
But reality bites.
I went to my first cancer event last weekend, the Young Adult Cancer Conference at Dana Farber. I met my first YA colon cancer patients - all female! Can you believe that with all of my visits to DFCI that I have never seen another young adult on my floor? We didn't have much time to talk but we had enough time to marvel that more of us exist, groan about how people assume we must have breast cancer, and bond over our mutual admiration for our shared therapist.
The conference offered breakout sessions. I chose "Creative Mindfulness" in the morning which surprises none of you. Yes, of course I picked the creative endeavor that only grazed upon facing one's cancer. As the day progressed though, I felt myself growing quieter, more introspective. I found myself wishing I had time to stay for the session on discovering/owning/building your identity. I need to be more of a participant in the cancer part of my world. Right now, I feel like I'm living two separate lives and not successfully. I'm giving maybe 50% of myself to everything - work, friends, Mike, anything I like. I'm spending so much energy on not thinking about my disease or dying that I'm not really living. It isn't satisfying.
I'm not the same. Yes, my core is the same and I still love high fives and I'm just damn likable. But I can't stay the same. The August 2014 cancer patient me is not the same as the April 7 cancer patient me. It was sobering to realize that I belong in this other world. This world of stolen dreams, hopeful smiles, and secret tears.
I'm not ready for this.
But in the meantime, I'll go to chemo tomorrow and look forward to the next trip to the grocery store where Mike and I dance down the aisles. And because I don't want to leave you feeling sad for me, here's a totally apropos video that I have shared before and will share again!