A Year After Cancer

October is, after all, breast cancer awareness month. I would be remiss if I didn’t post something in honor of this event. I’ve been shopping amongst pink-labeled produce for weeks without so much as a scowl. That’s a far cry from how I felt last year. How freaky is this? I just realized that I was diagnosed with breast cancer exactly a year ago today. Isn’t it weird how your body knows things before your brain does?At the risk of sounding trite, in the intervening year, I have grown in many ways. I have not experienced the over-reaching life epiphany that I supposed, but I also only dabbled in cancer which was not terminal. I had it easy as far as cancer goes. Surgery and radiation.  Cancer is the gift that keeps on giving, though, right? Following the conclusion of cancer treatments, I did get to have a biopsy of a suspicious spot on my left breast and identified a benign ovarian cyst, but that’s pretty minimal. Still, cancer is cancer, and hopefully Todd Akin isn’t going to tell me that because I had only had Stage 1 invasive ductal carcinoma, that my cancer is not legitimate or that my body has a way to shut that whole (cancer) thing down. Sorry, I can’t get over Akin’s unbelievably ignorant comments leading up to the Missouri senate race. Any-hoo.

a year after cancer

I can’t believe it’s a year after cancer

I am, I believe, a more balanced and thoughtful person. I appreciate my physical energy as well as the energy I send out into the world. My priorities have shifted, even though they haven’t changed. I still yell at my children when they send me off a cliff, but I think I linger longer when I hug them, and I’m immediate in my apologies. I’ve never been one to rest on my laurels but I have a heightened sense of responsibility to drive projects to completion. I wish the bouts of insecurity over getting my book published would go away, but it doesn’t take me as long to get back to a place of self forgiveness and hope.

I still have some unhealthy habits, don’t get enough sleep, and could eat less crap and exercise more, but I appreciate what I’m eating more and think about what I put into my body. The annoying part is that I don’t always do what I know I should. That’s being human, I suppose. Though still hard on myself, I get to a place of peace more quickly than I did before. That’s progress, even if it’s not an epiphany. Thanks, Cancer!