This is me with a bright smile, before it all started. When I had the world by the balls. When I had dreams that could all come true. When I was sure of life, that all I needed to do was ask, believe, receive and give back. When all I need to do was eat right, exercise, meet the right people, set goals each year and pursue them. Not bad, huh? Why wouldn’t all this woman’s dreams come true??
I started this blog in 2011, when I was breast cancer’s newest recruit. I aimed to tell the tale of a bystander drawn into a conflict she had no connection to, no passion for, no interest in – but that drafted her anyway and how she managed to make it home. Unfortunately, the journey was a dark one which I believe is better kept to myself. Instead, I decided to talk about my homecoming and the challenges I faced as I put my life back together after being rocked by such a debilitating disease. The posts that followed were the stories of those who had gone before me and what they did, the successes and happiness they’d found.
In 2015, I was diagnosed with a recurrence. Like it or not, I am now a career soldier of cancer. And once again I shifted the focus of this blog to chronicle how the two of us made peace so that we can share this body and a long, happy, healthy life, even if we’re adversaries. It begins with a new look, shorter hair, a person who I look at in the mirror and I no longer recognize, even though I cheer her on. This is about getting to know a stranger who calls herself me. I know I can’t bounce back, because I can’t go back to who I was. What’s done can not be undone and some of what cancer has done to me is harsh, what it’s still doing to me, no matter how I try to counteract it. For me, there is only moving through it. I’ve chosen to be resilient, and resilient people do not bounce back, but find a way to integrate what they’ve been through and use it to flourish, grow and thrive. In the end, instead of rainbows, we find wisdom. And that is what this blog hopes to uncover.