By now, it’s mid-March, I’m waiting, rather impatiently, for March 17th to meet with my surgeons. I’ve been dealing with this for almost two months, one month with only a very small group of people knowing, and then after my official diagnosis on February 18th, everyone in my circle knew.
So, what’s changed? On the outside, I appear fine. I make jokes about it, bury myself in work, and keep busy at home with my son. On the inside I am completely falling apart. I am about to talk to a surgeon about amputating my breasts – voluntarily. I am halfway across the country from my family, so other than calling, there is no sit down, face-to-face conversations. My friends were initially supportive, but now they’re distant. I think everyone just wants to give me space, others, let’s be honest, just don’t want to be bothered with it, and a very, very small group actually text and call … and come to visit on the weekends.
I’m still hosting small gatherings, I work, I go out with friends, do stuff with my son and to the human eye, I am fine. But I am not fine. After putting Aiden to bed every night I cry most of the night. I am faced with the possibility of dying. My son has a father but we’ve always lived far, so they talk on the phone and we visit when we go to Kansas, but there isn’t a real relationship there because Aiden hardly knows his dad. Aiden’s life is here, with me. I am his mom. I am supposed to be strong. I am supposed to take care of him. How can I have this deadly disease? Why? Haven’t I been through enough?
There are times that I am so mentally exhausted … just tired. I have spent my life fighting. I worked my way from nothing. A trouble making kid, a high school drop out from small town Kansas to a successful professional with a Master’s degree, all while being a single mother, not collecting a dime of child support and living halfway across the country from my family – so when I say single parent, I am 100% on my own. Nothing has come easy. I fought and sacrificed and earned everything I have with hard work.
I had so many goals and I was marking them off my list and I finally felt that I could exhale a little bit. All of my hard work was paying off and now, I can live. I can work, spend more time with Aiden, and volunteer more … then the other foot dropped. I was diagnosed with breast cancer.
Sometimes I feel cursed. Why can’t I really be happy? Why can’t things just be ok ? How come every time good things happen, bad things happen and I have to put my gloves back on and fight. I’m tired of fighting.