December was pretty hard, but I kept on being able to live my life. Like, mostly at least. I was so fucking tired. I rested more, slept more, listened to records more, stared out the window more. January wasn’t easy, but it was worlds better overall.
The cards, the pictures and drawings, the music, the letters, the mixes, the QUILT, the care packages, the CAKE, the flowers, the food delivery. Truly, you all sent SO much love my way. I am staggeringly lucky in the people that I know and the generosity and care and affection you’ve extended to me. ❤
Onna came to visit, my brother came to visit, Bridget came to visit, Erin came to visit. Amanda went with me to a bunch of appointments and Sarah was on-deck as backup. I was extra careful with wearing a mask and washing my hands. I spent hours, days, really, on the phone with insurance. With the help of steadfast friends and literally 910 lbs. of dry ice delivery throughout 14 weeks, I kept my hair.
So when I look in the mirror, it’s the version of myself that I recognize. And I didn’t have to tell people jack shit if I didn’t want to. I admit that I had — and have — a bit of a chip on my shoulder about not letting health stuff become the most salient thing in my life. I already have a full life and identity in a billion other ways. Though I’m fine with and open about cancer stuff, it’s also something that I didn’t ask for and just have to deal with. We all have that sorta stuff at some point or another. I’m still me.
Each time over the last few months that I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to just keep going a little bit at a time, and living my life? Something changed, or opened up, or happened and it was just, startlingly… OK somehow. All of these bizarre and entirely unpredictable fortuitous and just plain lucky things kept occurring around me in January, in February. One of the biggest: I didn’t end up having to do six additional weeks of chemo that had been on the table initially. I have no idea how or why each of these randomly graceful things happened, but I’m thankful they did, ‘cause as hard as some pieces have been, I’ve been liking other things going on in my life. Which makes it tricky to think about putting parts of it on pause for a minute. But, priorities!
This coming Wednesday, March 8th, I’ll go in for surgery at Northwestern and expect it’ll take 4-6 weeks to recover. I’ll spend the first week here in Chicago, then head back to Ypsilanti around March 18th for a couple of weeks. My Chicago folks have had my back all the way, but they deserve a breather too!
For the first few weeks, I won’t have much use of my left side, so I’ll need a hand with some things in Michigan – mostly help walking my mutt Chewy and a few food drop-offs. If these are things that you feel like you could lend a hand with, my friend Onna has updated a MealTrain with some sign-up slots (also with a few things for that first week in Chicago).
Once I’m back in Ypsi, if you’re interested in swinging by for a chill-hang, dropping off some takeout, going for a walk, or whatever, hit me up! Looking forward to being a bit closer to so many of my Michigan loves for a bit. And the outcome of the surgery, well, I’ll be relieved to be one more chapter along on vanquishing this cellular malfunction. Little by little, getting there, with all of your help! ❤