Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Leaving Your Mark...
We found this inukshuk on the beach a few weekends ago, made by someone else who’s been out to enjoy the wonderful scenery. As I searched for a photo to go with this blog entry, an image about marking one’s passage seemed appropriate.
Even the mention of the word cancer is enough to send most of us into a tailspin. Having many of the symptoms of ovarian cancer while my family doctor was away on vacation with no one to cover for her made the last 5 weeks a haze of fear and doubts. It was sleepless nights with enough internal pain to be uncomfortable, but never bad enough to justify the long waits in the Emergency department at the hospital. Not knowing what was causing the pain and other symptoms meant wondering if something was getting worse while they ran tests or left other things until my own doctor got back. I finally found out late Friday that my ovaries look fine. Now it’s on to more tests, some physio and slowly ruling out other things until they find out what is causing all this discomfort. Some of the stuff is so unrelated that I think my doctor is tired of trying to find a correlation. Perhaps it is actually several things going on at once...
Nick still insists that my warranty is running out... but so far, I haven’t smothered him with a pillow.
I read about Dani being so honest and sharing her own fears earlier this year through her blog. I know now what kind of relief you feel when something that scary is ruled out. I have other brave friends out there in cyberspace, at Retreat and in our congregation who had to face the much harsher news that they did indeed have Cancer. They have fought such brave battles that I am in awe. This past month especially has made me wonder if I would cope with as much grace, humour and courage as they have.
I have wandered in that greyness of uncertainty. I have struggled with computer codes and wondered if there would be a point to revamping the site at all if the news was bad. I have hugged my daughters more and prayed that I would have more time with them even as our whole city mourned the loss of four 16 year olds in a horrible car crash. I have drawn, journaled, stitched, prayed, wept, wondered, hidden and finally emerged on the other side of this experience with the certainty that it is NOT about how many days we are each given, but how we live each one to the fullest. It is about how and what type of mark we leave on the world around us and in the hearts of those we love.
It is still frustrating in this day and age not to be able to walk up to a computer screen, let it scan me and have it tell me EXACTLY what is wrong. Picture a Hal type computer voice...
“Eat some dark, leafy greens today, Jen!”
“Time to stay away from the cookie with your tea, Jen.”
“That walk you did is toning your legs rather nicely, Jen.”
“You should put ice on that bruise, Jen.”
“Your iron’s a little low, Jen. Time to go out for some liver.”
“I think you need a hot bath and some chocolate, Jen.”
“You’re thinking too much again, Jen. Go get some sleep!”
If I keep telling myself to just put one foot in front of the other each and every morning, and never go on a chocolate-free diet, I should be fine.