I booked an appointment with my GP today. I have this little read bump on my arm that started out as a little red dot, but grew and changed shape. I was a bit concerned about it. Not afraid really. I mean, ooooh, cancer how frightening and unknown for me 😐 Not so much. Unpleasant, yes, but terrifying and unfamiliar, not so much. Kinda “been there, done that” ya know?
Well, it was nothing. He took one look and could tell right away. But I hadn’t been to see him in a while, so it was nice to sit and catch up. It made him happy when I reminded him that my five year anniversary is in October. I am within arms reach of being “cured” It was nice to see the mix of surprise and joy on his face. I had to remind him that it’s almost nine years since I walked through his door that first time, when the cancer odyssey began. He was the one who started the ball rolling. I might not be alive today if it weren’t for him. He took one look at me at that first physical and shoved me right out the door into the arms of the next doctor I needed to see, and did it in such a way that I leapfrogged over several six month waits and ended up with a diagnosis in two months. I owe him much.
We just chatted about what my life is now, the opportunities that have come up for me, how I feel. I told him how distant it all seems now. How emotionally uncharged it is, most days. This is my normal now. I have to really think to remember the time before the cancer came into my life to get its ass kicked. I am finally not flinching at good fortune when it comes, and assuming that the other shoe is just waiting to drop on my head and give me a concussion. I enjoy when something or someone good comes into my life. I no longer feel that surge of terror when I have to go for my checkups like I used to. I’m starting to accept that it is passing from my life. The weight I have carried on my shoulders has shifted into a comfortable carrying stance.
But, in some ways, I don’t want it to fade so much that I can’t remember how awful it was, how draining and horrific. I don’t want to let it go. And sometimes it does come back to me: what I did. What I accomplished. How strong I was when I needed to be. How hard I fought. That I want to remember.
And I always will, no matter how comfortable I get in my skin, with my scars, with my crutch. That is mine. I won.
“Who would have thought when chance came calling
that this would be my defining story
and who could have guessed on my life’s journey
I could find my way through this extraordinary day.”
– Extraordinary Day by Delta Goodrem