Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Cancer in a box


I put my cancer world in a box today. It is filled with all the tbings that I have encountered thus far in this path. Cards,notes, messages, gifts, books, my chemo journal, my "courage" stone from my SIL (it came with me to every treatment and doctors visit) and my "fearless" necklace from my niece (I wore it every day during my treatment, never once did I take it off), items from my "sisters" that I will pass on to another woman I may meet undergoing breast cancer and the last thing to go in the box will be my wig and scarves. This was not a fork in the road that I would have chosen, but it chose me. This little detour in my life is now over.

It took me 10 days to fully recover from this chemo treatment, far longer than the other three treatments. I can say I was crabby and irritable and thanking god I didn't have to go through any more! It was not fun! I still think it really has not hit me that I can now carry on with my life, although I do have some reconstructive surgery coming up this year.

Have I changed through all of this? I would like to hope so. I now really don't sweat the small stuff. Things that really sent me over the edge before, I just kind of take it in stride. I find myself not getting as mad as I used to about everyday little things that ticked me off (messy bedrooms, crazy drivers, my unorganized household)and I do find myself being kinder to people in general(opening a door for a mom with a stroller full of kids, reaching for some yogurt in the grocery store for the little old lady who can't reach that high or even saying a kind word to the crabby lady checking me out at the grocery store). You never know what path they are going down or what burden they bear. Someone else is always in a worse off situation than myself. I have been able to accept help from friends and family (and this one was hard for me) and have found the true meaning of friendship. For the past 6 months the cancer world has been a part of my life. I am glad to be able to now say GOODBYE!

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Congratulations Gail! You are very strong. I did the same thing with a box for all my "cancer things" but I did it when I was done with wig and hats, so you are doing it a lot sooner. Good job! It is something none of choose, but I have to say I am a better person, I just wish it didn't take cancer to change me. Good job, on moving on! Hugs, Connie

Netherfieldmom said...

Amen! Pretty box, too.

Lissette said...

Praise the Lord! Congrats!

Kim said...

Gail-
As I have said so many times before...you are just amazing. How you have dealt with all of this has really been an inspiration to me. I will continue to drink out of my breast cancer awareness travel mug and sport the pink ribbon in a variety of fashions to remember your journey. In time will we see any new pictures of regrown eyebrows or other hair? Love you to pieces,
Kim

Anonymous said...

Gail:
I am very proud of you. You have shown me so much strength and wisdom in the past 6 months. I always knew you were a strong and wise person, I just never knew how far you could take your strength. I am honored to be your friend. I truly wish you did not have to have this life experience, but you dug in and conquered. Amazing.
Sharon

Anonymous said...

Gail, Congratulations....You were an inspiration to many women by just bloging your experiences. I have sent other ladies to your blog that have been through the process/or are going to go down this path.You did it with a smile and stepped right over the obstacles in your path, you truely have been remarkable and I am sure I could not be as strong! BRAVO!!! love you Debbie

Dollyster said...

Gail, a lovely box for a not-so-lovely experience. You have faced your trials with grace and courage and I am happy they are behind you. Thanks for sharing your ups and downs with those of us that love you. I hope this is "the end" of the path called breast cancer for you. Love, Sandy