Hurray for 2 years!

"Never underestimate the power of your wanting to be here."  

People wish me well all the time, but I don't think I've ever seen such a beaming look of real hope and joy as the expression worn by my podiatrist when he said he was glad I was doing so well.  He was genuinely impressed by my attitude, he said, and he told me about how he's always wanted to blow glass, all through college and biochemistry.  Good thing, too, because he was performing ancient chinese torture on my toe as he spoke warmly about how I shouldn't go back to work and if I did, it should be at Peet's Coffee.  All I remember was how truly happy he seemed that I was still here and trying to have a good time at it.  That made me feel amazing, strangely enough.
It's funny because I'm the serious one in the family.  My mom and sister always tell me how much I stress over and internalize things, dwell on/can't let things go, and how I go over the top on doing things for people.  I'm not funny, like the rest of the family either.  And yet, people always comment on my cheerful disposition.  Am I just pretending, or am I actually relatively cheerful? 
Maybe it's both.  Whatever's going on in my head is well-hidden by my ability to discuss superficial things.  Being glum is boring, energy-consuming, and a total buzz-kill, and it's not in my nature to be glum really.  I do, however, like solitude quite a bit, and nurture it, which may be why I can be cheerful when I am faced with people.  
Anyway, it was two years ago on June 15th when I received my diagnosis.  I was in my empty courtroom with a friend, having lunch, when the call came in.  The doctor wanted me to go in and I said, "Why, so you can tell me what I've already figured out?"  He was aghast at my relatively calm, even petulant, demeanor.  Little did I know that it wasn't going to be just a matter of having half a lung removed and chemo, etc.  I thought, Ok, I'll go through all the rigamarole, and I'll be fine.  It never occur to me that I might be "incurable", or even "terminal".  I wasn't falling down or anything, I'd never even been hospitalized (and still haven't).  I was so clueless.  There was lots of crying after two visits with the first oncologist.  Luckily I had the presence of mind to find a new one and move facilities.  Just remember, you have choices (well, some)!!
I'm supposed to be running errands and all sorts of busy body things, but I think I'm gonna take it easy and go to Alameda for a walk.  Yeah it's 10 miles away, but it seems like a nice thing to do to celebrate 2 years.

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9 thoughts on “Hurray for 2 years!

  1. Congratulations!
    I wonder if you struggle with what this "means." Or maybe it means nothing, or what I should say is that it means just what it is. I imagine that it's complicated! But, I think you're right and should NOT be serious, avoid reveling in anything except in another two years. And I hope you have at LEAST two more!

  2. Jazz! Do you want to work at Pete's Coffee? You should if you want to, but Pete's makes me poop. Kara says it's because the coffee is all dark roasted, and that makes the beans oily.
    I remember when you told me about your diagnosis. I'd just come back from vacation and I was sitting at the baliff's desk in the courtroom. I think I was the only one in the whole courthouse who didn't know. I remember hearing you say "cancer" and "a year to live." I think I started crying and you gave me a hug. You gave me a hug and told me if anyone could make it, you would. I believed that then and I believe it now! You rock on, girrl.
    Nichole

  3. Heh heh, so true! I did walk, and the good thing about celebrating these markers is that they reawaken one's awareness, reminding one to be mindful of the moments and days, to hold the special ones close to your heart. I imagine you do that, maybe in an unconscious way, you've been practicing it for awhile now. Doing art helps so much, too…

  4. I was so naive, LOL, but you know, I hate to go down without a fight. Some days I feel so lazy and tired, but when the feisty Aries rears its ugly head, I take advantage of it. One of the reasons the podiatrist's words really brought it home to me is, I do want to be here. In this world. And all the connotations of that, good and bad. Because the bad is so relative now, that anything good is amplified. I guess I should've included that in the post.

  5. Don't you want to go back to that first Dr. & tell him to go fuck himself. I don't know why you think you aren't funny, you crack me up all the time. Looking at next week for a weekday 2 dayer. More info to come.

  6. Oh Jazz, you are amazing!!! We need to get together again, that would be wonderful! I am working from home now and am able to talk on the phone while I'm working, so let me know if you ever want to chat! We have alot of catching up to do!
    Take Care,
    ~Jaci….and Shannon too….and all of the doggie-roo's!!!

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