>Radiation Day Four

>As the old saying goes “I feel knee high to a grasshopper.”

It’s not just because I’m tired. Or because of the strange chills I’ve been getting or even the fact that I feel like some one put a heating pad in my bra. No. I’m feeling sorry for myself because I’m ashamed of myself for not being super woman.

I recently found out that an acquaintance has breast cancer. She hasn’t told anyone. She only told me because she thought we might run into each other at the Cancer Center.  This woman is quite a bit older than I am, yet when she had her surgery she returned to work the following day. She is quite proud of the fact that she “recovers quickly.” She spent a good bit of time going on about how she so’s resilient that no one even knows she had surgery. She didn’t even take any time off from work. She says that’s just how she is. She doesn’t know what all the fuss is about. She says she’s already beat the cancer (she hasn’t started her radiation treatments yet) and she doesn’t need counseling.

I spent most of last night mentally kicking myself for beingn such wimp and a whiny one at that. If I had any doubt I’m a big baby, well after talking to her, now I know I for sure that I am.

I spend a lot of time on this blog talking about what I’m going through. Does that make me whiny? It’s not my intent to be whiny. I drone on and on about all that I’m going through because I thought that if I could talk about what I’m feeling (the good, the bad, the whiny – all of it) it might help others. A doctor can tell you about the challenges you’ll be facing, but somehow it doesn’t seem quite real unless you hear it from someone who has actually experienced it. That’s why I’ve been reading so many stories about breast cancer survivors.

I wanted to find out way to do something for others (and I’ll be honest, airing my fears and concerns – and my successes and blessings on this blog is helpful for me.)  Tonight, I just don’t know. I know I’m rambling. It’s been a long week. The radiation has zapped my energy more than I ever expected.

On Monday, I thought I was doing well, all things considered. But now I’m not so sure. I guess I’m just having one of those days. Maybe I’ll be more rational tommorrow.

What do you think? Should people with an illness/disease keep it to themselves? Carry on as though it doesn’t exist. Should we all be Wonder Woman or should we just concentrate on being human?


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Benet
    Mar 18, 2011 @ 03:34:44

    >I think there is no right answer. Each person must face crises in her own way. If "recovering quickly" and keeping her problems to herself are tactics that help your acquaintance face breast cancer, then more power to her. I suspect that is a rare approach. I also suspect that not taking care of herself and not allowing her body recovery time may backfire on her. But perhaps not. You, however, live in a different body and have a different style of confronting adversity — and you have successfully confronted plenty of challenges in your life. You know what works for you generally and you are exploring what else might help you get through this. It sounds to me like you are carrying on in the way that works for you, which is always the wisest approach. As for "whining" or "rambling"? No one is obligated to come here and read your blog! You have invited others in to share your journey, clear about the fact that it is a frightening and personal journey indeed. In no way does any of that constitute whining.Now, stop wasting precious energy kicking yourself and get on with getting through this episode in your life. Take care, get well, and get back to normal! Love to you!


  2. Sharon
    Mar 18, 2011 @ 03:59:19

    >HI Bev! this is the first time I've read your blog – and I don't think you're whining. You are being real. I don't have a personal history with BC, but my father fought throat cancer and had both chemo and radiation while I was at SU. I'm also Lori Baur's big sis. She kept a CaringBridge site and in some of her postings, she indicated that it was often other BC survivors who (inadvertantly) made the cruelest comments. I guess we are all human, all fallible and can all say the wrong things (so let me cross my fingers here for some wisdom!)I suspect your acquaintance was projecting what she wanted to believe in herself — whether or not it is true? – which is functional as long as it works for her (in that her body or cancer cooperates in the way she is affirming). it's possible she can think positively in a way that will project to her body. It's also possible her body won't cooperate and she'll be in for a shock and completely unprepared mentally. However, the way she delivered all that info to you at this point in time – seems loutish to me.What a personal journey – it is your body and only you know how best to guide yourself psychologically, deep down. Easy for me to say, but surround yourself with folks that give you positive energy to help you move forward. don't beat yourself up for not being WonderWoman – in your own unique way, your blog is showing that you are….you are real and working earnestly on your journey.Lots of love & support,Sharon L.


  3. Joyce
    Mar 18, 2011 @ 12:54:06

    >You seem more sane and in touch with reality than the other woman. Her denial will probably eventually hit her with a big explosion. I hope not. But I guess that's her way of dealing with things, and if it works for her, OK. But your way of dealing with things seems more healthy to me. Get all your feeling out so you can look at them. Then go on – w/o dwelling on them – after the radiation is over. I betting some of your feelings will change during the course of the radiation. And, I think what you are doing will help others – it's always nice to know that what one is experiencing has been experienced by others, and they "made it through."


  4. Booklady
    Mar 18, 2011 @ 15:55:42

    >Thank you all so much. These were things I know, but just needed to hear!Sharon – can you tell me more about CaringBridge?


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