The time period of the end of February throughout the month of March in Minnesota is filled with uncertainty. Mother Nature can bring harsh days of snow, steady rain, and hopeful sunshine. In the case of my cancer, from testing to diagnosis, my emotions echoed Mother Nature in its variety and unpredictability all those years ago.
And just as Mother Nature repeats a similar pattern each year, so too does my heart, body and soul. Sometimes my mind forgets specific dates, but the body knows. My soul remembers the anguish of fear and uncertaintly as I went through testing. My body remembers the post-op pain and my heart aches for all that has been lost. Layers and layers of loss.
When I look into the mirror of my life since my diagnosis, there are cracks, creating images that don’t make sense. The cracks began as a chip of fear and continued to spread a web of emotions and changes into my work, relationships, appearance, and overall health.
Looking closely at the reflection, my face is familiar, but it’s like looking at someone you knew as a child and is now an adult. You know there has been growth and change, so the essence of the person may be the same, but so many traits are distorted that you question if your eyes are playing tricks on you. Are you still there, I wonder? Uncertain, I keep searching the image for answers.
In the eyes that look back I see the blissful ignorance of longevity has been replaced with thoughts of mortality. I see the days that were so harsh, my breath was taken away, as well as the days spent in limbo and rain. I also see sunshine and someone who has crawled to her knees, and then to her feet, time and time again. Not because she had the strength to do so, and not because she’s special in some way. No, she’s just someone who decided there was no other choice than to apply glue to the cracks in the mirror to prevent it from shattering beyond repair.
In reflection and celebration of eight years of no evidence of disease – 2023.
Dedicated to all cancer patients. May your glue have super powers and may you see sunshine in your reflection.