Floating Through Space
I received a gift yesterday from a friend who I just have to say has the most beautiful heart....seriously, her caring, beautiful way about her just makes you feel safe and so completely understood. She told me that her love language is gift giving and from being on the receiving end I will declare that she truly has a gift. I've been struggling knowing what to write lately because I've found myself in such a weird place. The tug of war that is my optimistic self and the part of me that is struggling through such a tough setback is like a war of words constantly happening in my mind. My friend gifted me a candle....but not just any candle. It had the name of my blog written on it and her encouraging words had me feeling like it's ok to put out here the real, raw version of what I'm going through. As the support of "Killing It Friday" has grown, I have to sometimes remind myself that the whole point of this is authenticity. It's easy to do that, be that, when no one is watching or in this case reading. The challenge then lies, to continue to be me when the urge to hide in the shadows of my own self doubt emerge. My gift to the world as a result of my cancer experience, I feel, is honesty. I feel that while my experience isn't the only way to go about living through this craziness, it is my very real and honest portrayal of what keeps me up at night and also just what sets my soul on fire. I've been faced and continue to be faced with challenges and also celebrations that leave me altered in both good and bad ways, if I"m being honest. Either way, I'm very grateful to my dear friend for lifting me up and reminding me that using this platform to express my joys as well as my demons is as good for me as it might be for some of you. I needed that reminder....My candle is burning, my thoughts are flowing and I'm wearing my heart on my sleeve. Here goes.
Tomorrow I venture out to Sioux Falls to see my surgeon to develop the plan for what will be my now 3rd reconstruction of my left breast. It's completely crazy to me that it has been 7 weeks since my emergency surgery that resulted in losing my breast and quite honestly pieces of my shattered soul. I didn't see that staph infection coming...hell, it wasn't even on my radar. I think the mere shock that I was suddenly so broken once again, was the biggest blow of all. I was driving to Mass this morning and a song came on that got my wheels a spinnin'. I started thinking about where I was mentally, emotionally and physically just 6 weeks ago and where I find myself today. Six weeks ago, I was going in for a follow up appointment to have my stitches taken out and the drain from my chest removed. I also had an appointment to get a prosthesis so I could mask the fact that I have this weird, uneven chest. As helpful as the woman who fitted me was, that prosthesis never felt like me, so I haven't worn it since that day. I got in my car after that appointment and just started sobbing. I called my sister on the phone and the flood gates were wide freaking open. I told her repeatedly that I just can't do this...I'm tired, I'm sick of having to work so hard through everything and I just want to be done. It was a pretty low moment for me. I felt so incredibly hopeless. I was also so very sad, scared and utterly defeated. That's a really crappy place to be. I had been there before, so I knew firsthand how difficult it was going to be to put one foot in front of the other and hopefully heal. I knew that emotionally it would be more challenging to recover from this than the physical aspect of what happened to me. My soul, my heart.....my wings....were just so damn heavy. So here's the thing, the difference, about this "go around" if you will. The difference this time has been that I have let people in. I didn't conceal the fact that I was and that I have been in this monster of a struggle. I haven't always been an open book about my life and my difficulties. When I was first diagnosed, I kept so much inside because I just didn't know what to do with it. My reality was that I would speak about it once I had waded through the muck on my own. This time I don't really think I was super brave or more fierce than I previously was, I was honestly just so incredibly tired. I didn't/don't have the energy to conceal anything. I realized almost instantly in the wee hours of my hospital stay that I needed help to get through this one. My pleading to God were of the "I can't do this alone this time" variety. What I'm reflecting on today is how I"m here today, so much stronger than I was 7 weeks ago and all of the support I've had along the way. I couldn't have made it here alone. I'm going to give myself some credit...brace yourselves....I don't do this very often! haha! But really, this path I'm on now is being navigated 100% by yours truly and I'm doing one hell of a job. Without a doubt, however, I've had to stop many times down this road and ask for guidance and it's true when they say "ask and it shall be given to you, seek and ye shall find"....I pleaded for help and the right people have been put on my path to help me. So much gratitude......
So here I am, still a little fragile, but rising from the ashes. I'm somewhere floating between broken and mended. I'm so hopeful that tomorrow I go home with a plan that feels right and gives me hope that I will be able to put this all behind me at some point in time. I am different than I was just a couple short months ago. I'm getting pretty good at figuring out these new versions of myself and finding confidence and just the right amount of edge that make me feel kind of untouchable. Well, not entirely, but you get the point. Nikita Gill said it best:
"Before she became fire, she was water. Quenching the thirst of every dying creature. She gave and she gave until she turned from sea to desert. But instead of dying of the heat, the sadness, the heartache, she took all of her pain and from her own ashes became fire".
I know that whatever is coming at me next, I am rising. My wings are starting to feel a a little lighter, thank goodness, and I am floating through this beautiful life affirming, life changing space. I'm a little obsessed with the artist/musician Sia. Her song "Floating Through Space" has been lifting me up and helping me to feel gratitude when honestly in the previous weeks there has been so much sorrow. I hope you also feel the strength of your ability to make it through yet another day despite your hardships or obstacles. Just like the grains of sand she talks about in her song, we really are better when we are holding each other's hands and lifting each up during the moments when the weight of the world is so heavy. This is me. floating through space. Not sure where I"m going to land, but grateful for the strength, courage, authenticity and love that I'm receiving on this once in a lifetime journey called life. My wings are your wings..... Always so much love-M
"Floating Through Space"
(from "Music" soundtrack)
You made it through another day You made it through another day You did it, let's celebrate (Oh, oh) Some days you feel you'll break But you made it through another day Yeah, you did it, let's celebrate (Oh) 24/7 and 365 You made another day, made it alive Made another day, made it alive (Yeah) 24/7 and 365 You made another day, made it alive Made another day, made it alive So today, baby, remember it's okay We're all floating through space (Floating through) Today, baby, remember you're okay We're all floating through space Floating through, floating through, floating through Floating through space (Floating through) We're floating through space, we're floating through space We're floating through space (Floating through) We are like grains of sand, better to be holding hands Better to be holding hands, oh We are like grains of sand, better to be holding hands Better to be holding hands, yeah 24/7 and 365 You made another day, made it alive Made another day, made it alive (Yeah) 24/7 and 365 You made another day, made it alive Made another day, made it alive (Yeah) So today, baby, remember it's okay We're all floating through space (Floating through) Today, baby, remember you're okay We're all floating through space Woah, woah, woah So today, baby, remember it's okay We're all floating through space (Floating through) Today, baby, remember you're okay We're all floating through space Floating through, floating through, floating through Floating through space (Floating through)
"Some women fear the fire, some women simply become it." -R.H. Sin