Grace


Someone told me recently that I need to give myself grace. I’ve been thinking about that a great deal. Not just as it relates to me and my situation but the turn of phrase and it’s meaning. At the core it means to be kind to ourselves. Be gentle. I think that is good advice. I also think that it’s something that we don’t do well or often. I remember once reading about positive affirmations and I tried to practice what this preached but I just ended up disgusted and slightly amused as I stood in front of a mirror like Stuart Smalley and uttered nice things to my morning reflection while scrunching my hair.

How can we be kind to ourselves? Specifically in my case I was lamenting the fact that my weight loss has just stopped. Stopped dead. Slam on the brakes and put it in park. I’m annoyed as hell about this. Well I was. And sometimes I still am. So I thought about what giving myself grace meant in this situation and I determined that I should activate manic Mary. I bought supplements, I bought teas, I ordered books, I researched new recipes and new ideas and I went insane for a little while. At the end of the day it worked. I’m happier and more content because I took action BUT if we are honest I’m also losing weight now so manic Mary knows her stuff. So was that grace? Uh hell to the no. That was manic Mary and she is not kind to me at all. She’s crazy.

So then I was like “Wait manic Mary take a step back and let’s breathe”. I took some deep breaths, put my eyes back in my head, slept for twelve hours, tied my hair back (oh yes this is when stuff is getting real friends, when the hair gets tied back) and I just closed my eyes and sat quietly. Thinking about ways that I could show myself grace. I actually did that. I figured out step 1. Not to have steps. Okay just kidding. Sort of. But really my first toe dip into that pool of grace was to stop looking at the scale. I am in a program where I have to weigh every day and it is transmitted to an app. I also have to log all of my food and drinks. No biggie I do that anyway but the weight thing was FREAKING ME OUT! So I’m not looking at that number except once a week.

So grace. What is that? It’s defined as: Noun Simple elegance or refinement of movement. Courteous goodwill. Okay not entirely helpful. Verb Do honor or credit to someone or something by one’s presence. Ahh now we’re talking.

So self grace means honoring myself. Giving myself credit. Being present for myself. Okay. I’m there. So I’m not going to be Stuart Smalley because that’s weird and just makes me feel uncomfortable but I will honor myself. I will give myself credit. I have worked hard over the last 3-4 years to get healthier and despite some pretty major setbacks I’ve done that. I feel good, I look better and I have dropped a lot of weight. Now here is where before I would always drop in that disclaimer. I would dishonor myself and undo all my good work. I’m not doing that. It’s like if you compliment me on my dress I will say “Oh this old rag?” Okay probably not but you get my drift.

So what have I learned? I’ve learned that I’m my own worst critic but really no I didn’t because I already knew that. I’ve learned that I don’t really know how to be kind to myself. Is that a learned behavior? You know what’s funny/not funny? Typing that makes me uncomfortable. Not sure why. I will have to take that out and dust if off later. Is that a female trait? Or is everyone like that?

On a factual basis I have learned that my weight is crazy stupid all over the place day to day. I have learned that I have a voice and I have to advocate for myself. I’ve learned that sometimes my theories might actually warrant serious contemplation and ultimately that I might actually know what I’m talking about. I’ve also learned that I have to ask people to listen to me and if they don’t, keep talking until they hear me. I think those are all examples of showing myself grace. Much of this I definitely have learned before but I now know I have to keep re-educating myself. So for now this is how I’m showing myself grace. Not with rocky road ice cream or Steak n Shake. Laugh if you must but both things were definitely in the running. I love me some Steak n Shake. But in my world right now I have to consider how my actions might actually be unkind. To me. I’m literally shaking my head right now just putting that in writing. Am I alone in this? Does anyone else feel a little ridiculous being kind to yourself? I mean I’m not actively MEAN to myself but in this exercise I am trying to be conscious and present and deliberate. It’s weird man. But I’m doing it.

So how does this look for me? It is organic and I recognize that but for now, for today how this looks is I’m going to actively find ways to show myself kindness and probably more importantly find ways to stop myself from being unkind. To me. That might be the hardest part.

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Summer rain


The sound of the rain hitting the ground. The smell of the dirt. The steam from the blacktop. The grey blue sky. The clean cars. The green trees.

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I’m tired … this is a bit of a ramble


I’m stressed. I’m sorry. I’m sad. I’m angry. I’m scared.

I cried today. I mean I messy cried today. I’m scared. I’m scared for my friends and my family and my hometown. I’m conflicted because I feel like being sad is not my right. I’m just trying to figure it all out and I don’t know what it all is yet. My daughter and I were talking and I was trying to explain why I was so wrecked. She got it, she understood and she assured me that I was reacting exactly how I should be. I don’t like this. I don’t like it one bit. I want to go back to my cocoon and my simple life where everything is easy. I like my “Kumbaya” outlook on life. I like things to be simple and I like to surround myself with love and laughs and kindness and generosity. I worked hard for that and I deserve it.

Here’s the thing though, so does everyone else. We all want the same things in life, at least fundamentally. Maybe you want a fancy new whip or a big vegetable garden and I don’t want those things but I know what makes me happy. Happy. That’s such a simple thing right? Evidently not for all of us.

I’m a member of the human race. I’m a white person. I enjoy and take advantage of my privilege as a white person, mostly blissfully unaware. I think I’m kind, tolerant and loving. I believe to my very soul that I’m a good person. I think, I hope that the people who matter to me – actually even the ones that don’t – can see that I am. I want to do the right thing. I strive to do the right thing.

I want to be on the right side of this. The other day after a couple of sleepless nights I had a bit of a temper tantrum. I didn’t understand why people were congregating and scaring my loved ones. I do now. I think I did then but I let my fear cancel out my common sense. I think many of us do that. I’m trying to learn how to recognize a fear response and instead to stop the spiral and to form a logical conclusion. Now is a good time to practice that.

I don’t have any answers. I just have a lot of questions and to be honest I’m just very uncertain of my role in this. I know what I want, that’s easy. I want everyone regardless of how they look, who they love, where they worship or where they live to be treated the same. I want to be strong in my convictions and certain of my mission. I want to set an example and choose wisely. I want to do the right thing.

I’m sick to my stomach. My heart hurts, I mean I think it actually hurts. I’m crying again. People are dying just because their skin is brown. Good decent men women and children are living in fear every day. I will never feel that fear. I’ve written that sentence and erased it so many times. Is it my right to cry? Some have said that my friends who are people of color would not appreciate my tears because they feel they are disingenuous. They’re not though. I feel real feelings about this but I’m not sure if it’s OK for me to share this.

I don’t have any answers. I don’t really even know the questions I want to ask yet. For now I’m going to keep talking, keep reading, try my best to educate myself and understand what role I play in this and how I can be a part of this in a respectful and contributory way.

I took a short social media hiatus mostly if you could believe it because of the big mask debate. But then as is wont to happen in this crazy world, things took a big fat turn when George Floyd was murdered. I’ll be honest, I was kind of glad that I was on a hiatus because I didn’t know what to say or do or think. If we are being completely honest I was also afraid to see what some of my friends might have to say. At the end of the day I decided that my heart can’t take it so I’m not going to go looking. At least not today.

So for now I’m just going to keep trying to educate myself so I feel stronger and more confident. I might be sad and scared right now but that’s OK because I should be, we all should be. That’s how change happens.

I’ll be around. Maybe. Don’t count on it though because I need to figure some stuff out.

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You think you’re a good person but you’re not!


“You think you’re a good person but you’re not!”

That phrase was angrily and deliberately thrown at me recently. I give no credence to this person’s opinion of anything or anyone. Not because she’s a habitual liar but because I believe her ability to discern such things may be compromised due to illness.

That being said, of all the things she said to me that day, that’s the one I can’t seem to shrug off. There were a lot of pretty terrible things said to me and about me over the course of a few days last month. It all culminated in a relocation of sorts. Suffice it to say. I am still here. She is not.

The thing is I’m more content but I’m not happy. In my estimation, my being happy about this turn of events puts me squarely in the “not a nice person” category and I do not want to be that person. I felt that my safety and mental well being were threatened so I have a sense of relief. I no longer have to deal with daily hostility and potential outbursts. I am doing great. I can breathe. I can see myself doing this for a very long time now. I have my feet back under me and I am stronger than I’ve ever been. I was right. I am right. I feel appreciated and listened to for the first time in a long time.

I do worry that this person will not be able to bounce back from this but I’m working hard to put that on a shelf for now. My focus right now is me, my life, my health, my family and friends and my career. I have a plan and that feels right. That feels positive. My overall outlook is looking sunny with maybe a few overcast days to use a weather analogy and I can live in that world.

I’m a good person. I am. I know I am. Aren’t I? Am I deluding myself? I’ve seen it happen to other people, do I think I’m a good person but in reality I am actually not? I do the right things, I read the right stuff, I feel like I am fundamentally kind and considerate of others. Am I? Sure I trash talk people and things sometimes but do those things define me? Does my calling a sales person a douchebag when I hang up with them make me less of a good person? I mean what if they actually ARE a douchebag? I’m honest for the most part. Do I fudge my weight on my drivers license? You bet your ass I do! That doesn’t define me because everyone does it. Right?

Am I really not a good person? Have I created this curtain which I hide behind presenting myself to the world as a good person but in reality I am actually a bad person? Am I a bad person? Was she onto me?

Every choice, every decision, every post, every article, everything I read or I post or I share or I absorb always in the back of my mind I have a checklist. “Does this make me bad?” “Should I not be laughing at this because good people don’t find this funny?”

It’s not a good place to be right now inside my head, I can tell you that. Okay maybe that’s not accurate. It’s a bit of a jumble of emotions and some confusion over how I should be feeling but it’s not NOT a good place. At various times throughout the day those words reverberates through my head as though she were still standing here right this moment saying them.

“You think you’re a good person but you’re not!”

How do I know? How is that defined? Did I work hard enough to try to help her? Did I find something lacking in her from the beginning thus setting her up to fail? Was I not as supportive as I should have been in her time of need? Could I have done better? Did I push her – intentionally or unintentionally – into her final spectacular performance that forced us to take action? Is she actually as sick as I believe she is? Am I the one who is actually sick? Did I deflect my wishes onto her and make her this angry person?

I don’t think so. I really don’t. But if I’m not a good person but I think I am have I gone so far down the rabbit hole that I don’t recognize bad in myself? Have I lost the ability to discern good from bad? Right from wrong?

I’m not perfect, I make bad or questionable choices, I say things I have to apologize for later, I sometimes make excuses to myself for my bad behavior. I’m flawed and I’m a work in progress which I will own 100%. But am I bad?

“You think you’re a good person but you’re not!”

Recently someone who’s opinion I value expressed her dismay at my perceived cavalier attitude as it relates to the departure of my nemesis. Truly she was my nemesis although recently she has been going through some very serious things. I questioned myself and my motivation before during and after this incident but I came away cleanly in the knowledge that she was the same person three years ago that she is today. The very same. Her grief didn’t change her. Her anger changed me. It made me harder I think. It certainly made me take stock in my situation because life is too short to spend most of our waking hours with someone who drags us into this negativity vortex. It’s mind numbing, energy draining, life sucking. I had to choose me. I would still choose me.

I don’t think choosing me makes me bad. Or more accurately “not good”. Does it?

I just do not know. I don’t have the best self esteem. Much of my pride revolves around how good I am at my job. I second guess myself more than I should and my more evolved friends tell me all the time that my co-dependence and my defining myself by my career are not good life choices. Okay I hear you. I’ll change. Tomorrow.

When I was going through a very bad time in my life some years ago a therapist told me I needed to write down positive affirmations. I thought it was stupid. Like a vision board. I mean I tried it for a while and I didn’t really do so well. It’s hard for me. I can’t even do it with only myself. Some are easier than others though right?

I am smart

I am good at my job

I am ….. Hmm yeah so anyway that’s where my brain seizes and I stop typing affirmations.

Then I force them.

I am successful … okay maybe. Maybe.

I am open to new ideas. Yes definitely that, that’s a positive.

I am worthy. That’s the one I’m supposed to end on. I think I am. Well I thought I was more accurately. Am I? Am I lying to myself? Am I not worthy because I’m not really a good person?

What defines a good person? Who decides that for us? Where do we draw the line?

Once someone I was very close to told me that if I was crazy she wouldn’t be friends with me. But then she left. Does that mean that I am crazy now? That I was crazy all along and she finally recognized it?

Okay affirmations. Uhhh

I am kind. I think. Yeah I’m kind.

I am determined. Well sometimes. Most of the time. But does being determined mean that sometimes I overrun people and does that make me not a good person?

All of this makes my head hurt. My heart hurt. I feel sometimes like I’m on one of those merry go round things we used to have at the playgrounds. I feel like I’ve been spun and now I’m trying to walk. It’s a metaphor for the way my mind spins every time that sentence, that accusation, reverberates through my head. It makes me sad.

“You think you’re a good person but you’re not!”

I am. I am a good person. I am pretty sure. Aren’t I? Yes. Yes I am. But maybe not all the time? So how much time is okay to not be good? Like 20%? 5%? What if I’m only not good about other people to people who love me and recognize that just because I’m saying mean things doesn’t make me a mean person? Right? We all have that group of friends. The ones where you can talk about wanting to kill someone in their sleep for parking badly or calling a co-worker a bad name because they didn’t restart the coffee maker? The ones who know you’re kidding, mostly, when you plan together where you’re going to bury the body.

I don’t know. I really don’t. I have no answers today. Only questions. Lots of questions.

 

 

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Sunsets


It’s no secret that I’ve had a rough couple of years. I’m mostly past it now and getting further from it every day. The aftermath is mostly financial and I’ll deal with that as best I can. Today though this is what I’m thinking about. Sunsets.

I want to go where the sunsets make me cry tears of joy.

I want to watch the sun set with Anne Marie. I want to wake up with only the sound of a breeze through the trees and the crickets chirping. I want to have our coffee, wrapped in blankets, on the terrace with the damp morning air curling our hair. I want to drive with the windows open and the stereo on too high. I want to feel the breeze from the ocean on my face and the feel of warm soft sand between my toes. I want to make a hollow in the sand and sit on my blanket watching the surf ebb and flow. I want to watch the sun reflect on the waves like jewels as they come into shore. I want to watch the children scoop sand into their buckets and then dump it out again. I want to feel the tickle of the ocean on my toes as I walk along the shore. I want to feel my feet sink into the wet sand as I move out to my knees. I want to dive into the ocean and feel the salt water cleanse my skin. I want to sit on my blanket wrapped in a towel and read my book. I want to sip my ice cold water and feel the hot sun on my skin. I want to spend my day breathing the ocean air. Enjoying the solitude together. Talking when we want but otherwise just being there, together.

I want to walk into our temporary home and open a bottle of Syrah, savoring it while we wash off the sand and surf from the day. I want to fix dinner together companionably with ingredients purchased from the local market. I want to turn the music on quietly to accompany our meal while we sit and recall our day. I want to just be in the moment, no cell phones, just talking about our lives and remembering how things were. I want to talk about our lives, catch up in a real way. I want to talk about our futures, our plans, our goals.

Soon enough I’ll be back to reality. Today, I want to breathe, be in the moment and not worry about what awaits me when I return to the real world. Here, today, now I’m just focusing on the feeling of being in the moment and enjoying my limited time in a beautiful place sharing the experience with a beautiful soul.

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Self explanatory


Do you have diabetes? Uh no. Really?

You’d be so pretty if you lost weight.

Aww should you be eating that???

Oh you’re sick? It’s probably because you’re overweight.

The best diet you could go on is the “push yourself away from the table once in a while” diet. (Yes a cardiologist told me that)

Oh no I’m not prejudiced against fat people. Some of my best friends are fat. 🙄

Ohh (tch tch) she should not be wearing those pants.

Do you think she owns a mirror?

You should exercise more

You should eat less

You should cut out carbs.

Have you tried <insert diet here>

Don’t eat after 6.

Don’t eat that much fruit.

Oh … you eat bread?

No I’m just saying you would feel so much better if you lost weight.

I care about your health.

You look great. You must have lost weight.

You work out?

No really you must have diabetes. Have you been tested?

Well you should just try eating healthy.

I think you should ….

Maybe it’s your portions.

Calories in Calories out!

Have you had your thyroid checked?

No really … it’s diabetes right?

What about weight loss pills?

I don’t know. Fat acceptance just seems like excusing bad behavior.

Have you considered dieting?

Fat people are lazy

Fat people are slovenly

No you just have to set your mind to it!

Don’t you miss being healthy?

Oh you’re eating ice cream … ?

Should a diabetic be eating that?

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Gratitudes


Amazing family

Solid steadfast friendships

Help with things I can’t do

Clean floors

Flowers

Supportive co-workers

Informative member pages

Funny memes

Positive messages

Prayers

Daily text “check ins” 💕

Fur baby cuddles

Pain medication! 😀

Grocery delivery

Good surgeons

Beautiful surroundings

Good weather

Comfy slippers

Stretchy pants!

Good books

Netflix

The Grabber!

Social media

Get well cards

Health insurance

Grubhub!

Iced tea

Stool softeners (keeping it real 😆)

Journaling

Positivity

Kindness

Support when I’m not so positive

Humor

Popsicles

Sparkling water

Pillows

Internet

Flea Market Flip marathons

Surgical tape

A safe place

Random kindness

Children playing outside

Sunshine

Taking time to heal

Love and gratitude from me to all of you

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I am celebrating


I’m dealing with a lot. Probably not as much as some people but more than I’ve ever had to deal with before. I’m trying to be strong and not let my problems define me. I have these amazing examples of strength right in front of me all day every day. I want so much to be like them but I’m failing miserably. Well actually that’s the crux of this. I’m not failing, I just deal with things differently and I need to learn to be ok with that. I feel sad sometimes. I cry. I feel sorry for myself. I need to be okay with that, go through the emotions and then get back on track. It’s ok not to be this pillar of strength all the time.

I have been on this journey to get myself healthy and strong again. I have been comparing my results to past results or other people’s successes and coming up lacking. Losing weight is a challenge – mentally and physically. I have been letting my comparisons pull me into this negative space. I’m not doing enough, I’m not strong enough, I’m a disappointment. I haven’t lost enough weight. I’m a failure.

I have reacted in anger and defensiveness at the simplest suggestions – things I used to be confident enough to let roll off my back. Despite the gentle reminders of my friends (to whom I have not always been so nice) I let my lack of confidence turn into a lack of trust. I have allowed my negative headspace to impact my thought processes and everything seems like a slight or a criticism.

I have spent a lot of time and energy focusing on what I have not accomplished in my life and how my past choices have impacted my health now. Yes I have made bad choices that have caused me problems, it is what it is and now more than ever I need to focus on staying positive and continuing my journey to better health.

I have not “only” lost 43 pounds since 7/16/17. I have lost an average of a pound a week. I have not failed to meet my goals, I have done what I set out to do. I have lost weight and gotten healthier. I need to live my own mantra and celebrate the victories – large or small. My pants sag, I’ve had to buy some new clothes because the spring clothes from last year are too large.

I haven’t failed to get back to the gym. I was dealing with illness and fatigue and pain and medicine side effects that were impacting my life. Instead of beating myself up for what I haven’t done, I need to focus on what I can do. I can walk from the lot to my office without being out of breath. That might not seem like much but it’s enough. For now.

I got some excellent news yesterday and I was very happy. People told me I need to celebrate. That was a foreign concept to me. Celebrate what? Sure I am pleased but I’ve failed to accomplish my goals so I shouldn’t be celebrating anything.

I need to regroup. I need to pull myself out of this negative headspace and be okay with who I am now and what I have accomplished. I need to stop feeling sorry for myself.

I am strong in my own way. Maybe not as strong as some of the amazing women in my life and maybe not every day but that’s enough. I am smart, I am successful, I am learning and growing and becoming a better me.

I am happy and content. I am celebrating my successes. I have lost 43 pounds. I have taught myself to cook clean and healthy. I have created a lovely home for myself. I have helped to shape an amazing young woman into the person she is today. I have found a safe place emotionally and physically in which to exist.

I have found a good career and become a force to be reckoned with. I get accolades for what I do regularly at my job – I earned them and I deserve them. I have worked hard to be the best and while I’m not perfect I am an excellent Credit Manager. Recently my job has been highly scrutinized and dissected to the nth degree. I’ve worked long hard hours to show my results and what I have accomplished with the mess I inherited two years ago. Instead of saying “Ok bring it on I can handle anything” I’ve become angry and taciturn. I’ve reacted defensively and allowed paranoia and self doubt to impact my decision-making ability.

It’s all related. I’ve lost myself in the negativity.

I’m solid. I’m aware. I’m re-evaluating. I’m re-grouping. I’m taking life’s lemons and making lemonade.

I am celebrating my weight loss. I am reveling in the joy of my recent good news. I am telling the scrutinizers to BRING IT ON because my numbers will withstand any scrutiny because I am a rock star.

I am strong.

I am successful.

I am celebrating my life.

I am moving forward.

I am learning and growing.

Who I am is good. What I’ve done is great. I can do this because I am positive and I am a good.

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I am strong


I am good. I am happy. I am positive. I am worthy. 

I am strong. 

I have been feeling this cloud of negativity beginning to descend upon me the last few weeks and today, quite by accident I discovered why.  One persons toxicity can do such damage to another’s psyche. My mood crashed after an encounter and it suddenly became so crystal clear to me how much real estate I was giving this negativity nearly every day of the week. 

Today I am committing to myself. I will no longer allow this toxicity to take up residence anywhere within me – my heart nor my head. I will stay positive and happy and cheerful and won’t waste any more of my time (or yours) re-telling shocking stories or anything else. 

Today and going forward I am going to take deep breaths, put on my music if I have to and find my equilibrium again. I love my life and I love my work and I shouldn’t have to remind myself of that. 

I am happy. I am good. I am worthy. I am positive. I am strong. 

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Cancer sucks


So I have cancer. It’s so weird to actually type that. I’ve known for a while and I’ve shared with my loved ones etc. I always start out telling people the same way. “I am okay now and I am going to be okay”. This is absolutely true. I am fine and I am going to be fine. My cancer is very beginning stages and completely treatable. Incidences of my type of cancer spreading are extraordinarily rare. 

I have been diagnosed with adenocarcinoma grade 1 uterine or endometrial cancer with endometrial hyperplasia. Currently I am taking a synthetic progestin medication to control the amount of estrogen my body produces in order to keep the cancer from growing. This will allow me time to get healthy and strong and lose weight before I have surgery. The surgery will of course mean that they will remove everything. I’m fine with that. I am 53 as of Friday and I don’t need any of that stuff!

So basically two pills a day. Weird right? 

So I’m taking the pills, dealing with improving my diet and increasing my exercise. I’m cutting back on refined sugars and putting my mental energy into getting healthy. I’m not freaked out and I’m not sad about this. As a matter of fact every once in a while I find myself saying “Oh yeah that’s right, I have cancer!” The pills are basically for three months then I have another biopsy. As long as the cancer hasn’t changed then I can stay on the medication and continue to get healthier. If the cancer cells have increased then we will have to schedule the surgery sooner. My hope is that I will drop sufficient weight to get the surgery next summer when my daughter can be home for it. I really want that time although the thought of cancer cells just sitting there inside my body is a bit intimidating. 

A while ago, fresh from diagnosis, I burned my hand pretty badly and ended up at urgent care. They were writing my info for me on the form because my hand was immersed in ice water. He asked “anything else you can think of?” I said “Hm no not really I’m pretty healthy.” “Oh wait do you need to know I have cancer?” Now yeah it was a maybe stupid question in hindsight but come on what does my uterus have to do with second degree burns on my hand? 

Work is amazing. “Whatever you need” ” Just let me know when you have to be off” etc. My family is phenomenal. They ask good questions, give sound articulate advice, keep me grounded and remind me that this sucks but it’s not the end of the world. My friends are amazing. They remind me not to shut myself in and not communicate. They call me, text me, invite me places and remind me that they are there if I need anything. 

I have shut myself away a little bit. Well a lot actually. It’s the fatigue and the frustration with myself and my body. I am fine physically overall. The fatigue is a bitch but I do what the doctor says. “Eat right, get moving, rest when you’re tired”. It is also partially because of my dietary limitations. I’m retraining myself to eat clean and healthy and I’m not quite ready to get out there and try eating out. My house is straight but it needs some deep cleaning. I do what I can on the weekends but weeknights I’m tired. I know my friends don’t care what my house looks like but I do. 

I hate asking for help. I am strong, independent, capable of doing anything and self sufficient. I am the fixer, the doer, the helper. I am who people reach out to, I don’t ever need anyone. Believe that? I do. I did. No, I do. It’s very very hard for me to ask for help or even accept it when offered. It upsets people and I don’t mean to hurt my friends and family but it is who I am. I’m working on it though. It’s a flaw. 

I come by it honestly. Recently I was with my family. I asked for help with something. The next fifteen minutes was spent telling me all the different ways I could do it all by myself. I capitulated and will now do it by myself because now if I wait for help then I will look like a failure. Incapable. 

I know that wasn’t the intention of anyone there. Well maybe one of the people there but I know he doesn’t completely understand the ramifications of his words. Like he says things like “People who buy iPhones are idiots” and nearly every single person sitting in the room is literally holding a newish iPhone in his or her hands. 

So anyway, back to me. I have cancer. Fuck – that’s just surreal.

I think it needs to be said that I caused the cancer. I mean yeah my oncologist won’t say that but it’s a reality. I am obese, I am over fifty, I have history of breast cancer in my immediate family and I’ve had endometrial hyperplasia. I’m like a textbook case. Because I’m obese my body produces an excess of estrogen and as a result I have developed an estrogen driven cancer. So, I caused it. So there’s that. Now I can just put that away and focus on what I can control. Diet (nailed), exercise (still working on it), appropriate weight loss (20 pounds since I was diagnosed seven weeks ago). I mean I could starve myself but that’s no good for my body. I need to lose weight slowly and properly. 
So I cook and I chop and I eat clean beautifully made foods full of lean proteins, complex carbohydrates and good fats. I eat lots of vegetables and fruits and chicken breasts. I’ve renewed my relationship with ground turkey and huge gorgeous rainbow salads. I’ve begun grilling chicken for snacks and eggs any way I can get them. I love good clean food and I love to cook so this part is not difficult. The hardest part is getting my butt up and into the kitchen to do weekly food prep because that my friends is my superpower. When I can go into my kitchen before work and pull out ingredients for a quick omelet, chopped portioned ingredients for lunch and crunchy raw veggies for snacks I succeed. When I can come home at 6:30 or 7:00 from work and throw a meal together in ten minutes because I have pre-portioned meals already in the fridge or freezer I am golden. 

My birthday was Friday. On Saturday I had dinner with my family. My mom and my sister planned and fixed an amazing healthy menu. My sister made these granola Berry bars that were so so good and only like 200 calories which is entirely doable. 

My daughter is in New York. That’s a long way away. She’s so busy with her very demanding job and her hectic life but she still is making the time to call or text me much more than we used to. I appreciate her so much. She is really such a wonderful person. She is just beautiful inside and out. She also helps me to keep things in perspective and is my biggest supporter in my pursuit of a healthier lifestyle. 

I have mostly good days emotionally. Today is a bad day but that’s nothing to do with cancer. It’s more to do with my turning another year older I think. I think I’m having some hormonal responses to things. I’ve done some research and I don’t see much about that with the medication or cancer I have. I will ask my oncologist in October when I get my first biopsy. I don’t really have a lot of bad days but occasionally I do get a bit testy or teary or both. Even with that I know I can bitch to a friend or cry on someone’s shoulder if I need to. That’s pretty nice to know. 

Work is good. Work is great actually. They are appreciative of my efforts and energy, they respect my input and they provide intelligent feedback. I am learning so much and in less than a year had taken on two other departments. I’m a really good Credit Manager and I am rocking this so hard! My boss is the nicest guy!

Life is good overall. I moved into a really wonderful place a year ago and recently I bought my first brand new car. I am surrounded by amazing inspiring people. I am so lucky. My world is solid and I am content with what I have. Cancer doesn’t change any of that. It’s a stubbed toe, a skinned knee in the bigger scheme of things. I’m okay now and I am going to be okay. To quote e a slightly overused phrase “I’m going to kick cancers ass!” For today though I’m just going to go throw in a load of laundry and mop my kitchen floor. 

 

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