I was thinking of a list I could make if I had children to pass along..since I don’t ..I thought I would share..thoughts..experiences that I have learned and wished I could travel back in time and share with my younger self..
1. Not everyone will like you and that’s ok..
….it doesn’t mean you did anything wrong..or that there’s anything wrong with you..I still can remember walking thru the hallways of High School and hearing almost like quiet little mantras.. “I hate that girl” how can you hate someone you don’t even know? Maybe it was the way my face looked..my eyes..my clothes..how I walked..WHATEVER! I use to drive myself crazy trying to get people to like me..to even allowing men to sleep with me thinking they would like me..that didn’t work either..they got what they wanted and then tossed you like trash..
2. Don’t let others define you!
..Similar to the first statement..and I find this to be true for some even thru adulthood..if they don’t have a baby ..who are they? If they don’t have a husband..who are they? You don’t need another person to tell you who you are or define you! Be you! Find your passion! Find things that bring you joy and do those things!
3. Find something to nurture or love..
..This doesn’t have to be a person..it can be a beloved pet..a plant..a new talent or hobby such as painting or gardening..I have read articles about this subject stating it is actually good for your mental health to have something to care for..
4. Money is meant for the living..
So enjoy it now..I am not saying spend all your savings..what I am saying is you can’t take it with you when you die..My father worried abut money up until he was in the nursing home and could no longer communicate his fears..
Happy Father’s Day in Heaven Daddy..I miss you..! As I type with tears running down my face at 3:25 in the morning..And how ironic to write out my feelings..Because you were a writer..and I believe that was one of the gifts that you gave me..My father was an editor for the Wall Street Journal for many years..He started his own newspaper..He also dealt with bipolar all of my adult life until his passing in 2004..
Wow ..has it really been 10 yrs..No..we didn’t always have the best relationship, but if he was alive today..I could hear his voice and things he would say..some wise ..some just his way..he didn’t always have it easy ..he lost his mother to suicide when she was in her 50s..Due to this awful event..He didn’t get to go to college..and this makes him even stronger than I would have ever been..He still was able to get wonderful jobs at newspapers..leading up to the Wall Street Journal..Yes without a college degree..Something that would be virtually IMPOSSIBLE in this time and age..That man use to drive to NYC..take the path train from Hoboken..to I believe where the Twin Towers stood..he did this for gosh 20 yrs..In between he was on disability for his manic depression..back then they didn’t call it bipolar..And quite honestly growing up..I liked him better when he was in the manic state..But I heard that is common of people living with bipolar and family members affected by it..No he didn’t do outrageous things like travel on expensive trips.or have affairs like some of the famous people like Margot Kidder and Patty Duke..
Miss you dad..Mom dreamt of you last night..Hopefully you are watching over us..Hope so because I really can use an angel in heaven about NOW!
So it’s been a year since my stage 4 re diagnosis..it has been a roller coaster ride of emotions for me..in Nov 2014 it will be 2 yrs from my original diagnosis..it is true that going through a cancer diagnosis is similar to grieving,,I went thru all the stages..Denial..this couldn’t be happening to me.,cancer doesn’t run in my family..to Depression..not sleeping at all without the help of medication..for several months..when I did sleep waking up with the same dread..like I have to make an appointment or DO something about my cancer..which I always stayed proactive.,just in my OWN way..NOT WHAT EVERYONE ELSE WANTED ME TO DO..or I would be sitting here with my right breast ONLY..that would have been the only surgery I approved.,I had no desire to put plastic or foreign objects into my body to later on cause more harm..later on I find out that surgery would have caused the cancer to spread ..BEST DECISION..now I am in ACCEPTANCE..took me quite awhile..it was like one day..I had an aha ..yes I didn’t do it alone,,FB was my sanctuary and sometimes my rival..people loyal to medical procedures scolded me,,and people loyal to natural ways scolded me,,I couldn’t win..but alas has been my life..always the girl no one liked.,and I am sure secretly there were some that when they heard I had cancer..silently cheered..awful right…or they thought who cares..I never liked her anyways..ahh well regardless.,
I have read many books,,watched many you tube videos..from both sides..yes I still see my oncologist faithfully..and I still take my medication daily,,and get my Herceptin infusion every 3 weeks..
Will I ever fit neatly into a box..probably not,,even in the cancer world I don’t fit.,because I didn’t have surgery..chemo or rads..I CHOSE NOT TO..I FOLLOWED MY HEART..
I love this quote from Doreen Virtue..For those of you who don’t know her..She writes books about Angels..Good stuff..Highly recommend her..
Well it has been another trying week..But I am realizing to be a live and among the living you have to deal with what comes across your path..Dealing with doctors and insurance companies and pharmacies..not my idea of a good time..And this time it wasn’t for me .,it was for my boyfriend..I still believe health care should be free..but then I guess the insurance companies and doctors wouldn’t be as wealthy as they are would they? HMmm..ahh well..
I just don’t understand how a doctor willingly prescribes a $100 eye medicine knowing there is something cheaper..ok maybe he didn’t know..Luckily the pharmacist knew..but then again if you don’t ask you don’t know..so we didn’t think there was a generic available and my boyfriend was in pain,,I am the type of person.,if I can help I will..I had the money so I paid for the medicine,,then the pharmacist comes running up saying she spoke with the doctor..good news is he got the cheaper eye medicine..Bad news is my debit card got charged for the more expensive one ..hopefully the refund will go thru..hmm always something..
Then last week I was on the phone with my bank straightening out some fees that weren’t my fault..again I learned..open your mouth..sometimes you can fix the problem..
Ahh well I guess there is always a silver lining ..just a matter of looking for it..
I can so relate to those feelings..all cancer patients can..When I was first diagnosed it was right before the holidays in November 2012..How am I suppose to be happy and enjoy the holidays and act like everything is normal..I walked around lost and sad for months..Every day ..well those days I got any sleep..I would wake up and felt like the movie Ground Hog Day..every day was the same..it was like living a nightmare you can’t wake up from. You know those really bad dreams..then you wake up and say..whew ..it was just a dream..well this wasn’t a dream and I couldn’t ignore it..although I tried..pretend it wasn’t happening,,tried that too..Meanwhile other people were just living their lives…I didn’t have a ton of friends and family bringing me food or coming to doctor visits..I have always had struggles in life with depression ..and not having many friends..true friends.,friends that would be there for you..and yes a cancer diagnosis just magnifies what you don’t have more..and reminded me about my life..and now here I have this cancer diagnosis.. I could just do nothing and finally have this life over with..prove to the people who didn’t like me how right they were ..the ones who said they hated me,,yes I heard these words many times in my life especially high school.,then later in the work force..probably why to this day I find solace doing things alone or with small groups of people,,But one thing I have learned from cancer is.,yes I am different.,but that’s ok.,but growing up I tried so hard to be like everyone else..I am not very coordinated so sports was never my thing..I am more artistic and creative…ahh something I can do..
So I began crafting again..and it’s a wonderful outlet and therapeutic..I made an Etsy store a few years ago and started it back up again when I broke my ankle in Nov, 2011..Nov 2012 I get a cancer diagnosis,,my joke was,,geez will Nov 2013 be a heart attack..bad joke and I lived thru November 2013 unscathed ..Then I started making jewelry for breast cancer awareness..And other items..and I decided to donate a portion of the sales of these items to breast cancer charities such as Living Beyond Breast Cancer and to fundraisers online for other cancer patients I became friends with on Facebook.. https://www.etsy.com/shop/Susannj30?section_id=14340358&ref=shopsection_leftnav_2#
Do I still have my down days? Yes of course..But I try to do those things that bring me joy..whether it’s walking my dog..taking a ride up to New Hope, PA and walking around..whatever I feel drawn to that day..I recently purchased a Vitamix blender from QVC..QVC offered six easy pays which was the only way I could afford this blender..I have wanted one for years and it was a really good deal..so I said I am going to do it,,my mother scolds me..about spending so much..I said..”I have cancer..I am living for now..and if this machine can help me to eat healthier and lose weight..that’s a good thing..”