May 04, 2019

May the 4th Be With You


After a long absence, my longest to date I believe, it's hard to know where to start or how to catch up. I'm hoping to do that in my next post but today I felt it important to mark an important anniversary.

Two years ago today I was diagnosed with breast cancer. How has it already been two years? How has it only been two years? The ensuing turmoil, multiple biopsies, positive genetic testing, constant doctor appointments, double mastectomy with reconstruction, followed quickly by removal of my ovaries was a chaotic, draining, exhausting whirlwind. To say the least. But look at me, I survived. Despite my most dire thoughts on my darkest days.

And these two years later, I feel healthier than I have in ages. I honestly don't even think about cancer much these days. Sure occasionally I will have a moment where I wonder if that pain I'm having could be something more nefarious but I think I've struck a good balance between being diligent about my health and not living in fear and worry.

Here's the thing I've realized, if I spend my days worrying about cancer and it turns out that I don't actually have it, won't that be a waste of my energy and life? On the other hand, even if I actually do get cancer again will it have benefited me in any way to spend my days worrying in advance about it? I feel it would be a disservice to the life I have been given, to spend it fretting instead of living.

So, living is what I am doing and at full speed, hanging on for dear life but I think that is just what wrapping up the school and child rearing years looks like. Look for a post very soon on all things Emma as we prepare to launch her into the world.

And as a favor to me, would you please schedule that test or doctor's appointment that you've been putting off? Will you please be proactive about your health and advocate for yourself when you need to? And when a doctor makes you feel like a hypochondriac, please go find a new doctor. Take care of yourselves friends.


15 comments:

Melanie said...

It is so good to hear from you again - and I look forward to a lot more! But today is definitely a day to pause and reflect. I am just one of the many people who are glad you are well and healthy. Your message and example to us all are an important reminder. Thank you, my dear friend. Much love to you.

Elizabeth said...

I have followed your blog for years and am so happy that you are doing well. Reading your posts feels like reading a letter from a dear friend. I love knitting and gardening and baking, too, and I admire your sacred Wednesday tradition. My daughter is 14 and graduating from 8th grade next month. As we look towards the high school years, it is a bittersweet time. She is growing up way too fast! I can't wait to read your thoughts about Emma and graduating from high school! Take care!

NanaDiana said...

Jen-I am so happy to see a post from you. Cancer certainly takes its toll. After living with 3 different types of hubby's canceres over the last few years I know how draining and exhausting it is. We try to live in the day/moment and, while respecting what cancer has done in the past, we try not to project into the 'what ifs' of the future. God bless you- I wish you a long cancer-free life from this moment on. xo Diana

danube66 said...

Wishing you all the best from just a few miles down the road in Carmel! I am very happy for how things turned out for you, and admire you for your courage.
I look forward to seeing more of your crafting adventures.

Kim said...

Jen, I'm so grateful that you are here with us to share your story. You have handled this with such courage and grace. And, thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for your words about getting check ups and advocating for yourself. My mom might be with me today if she had a doctor that had taken her more seriously 2 years ago.

Susan said...

Jen, I did not know you back then but I followed your blog and clearly remember my breath catching reading of your diagnosis, then receiving my own almost 7 months later. I know it wasn’t an easy path to walk and a hard-fought battle at times. You speak to my heart and continue to inspire and I am forever grateful for the support. I am physically reminded daily what was and still experience the effects from chemo, but like you I very seldom think what if. Thank you for putting yourself out there. To all, yes please take Jen’s advice. Make yourself a priority, be your own advocate and if you ever end up on this same path, you won’t have to walk alone. Reach out and you will find a helping hand.

Penny from Enjoying The Simple Things said...

Jen, I am so glad that your health is great! xo

Vikki said...

You have really been tested these past two years but you can be so proud of yourself for coming through with flying colors. I'm at the age where I say "please, just one more good day" each morning. Each day is a gift--use it wisely.

Angela said...

Thank you for the post! May you live healthy and cancer free!! Glad to hear about the two years!! Many blessings coming your way!

Teresa said...

Two years!!!! I remember I was driving to my local nursery when you texted me with your genetic testing results. And now here you are, two years later, driving to your own local nursery and gardening up a storm! But my favorite part of this post is your outlook on worrying. Yes, what a waste of precious time, and so true that it would not change a thing if we were to spend our days dithering about an unknowable future. I so love watching you live each day to its very fullest.
I love you to pieces, my friend!

Jboo said...

So happy to see a post from you pop up! Blessings to you and your family!

Sherry said...

so good to "see" you again. :)
i too have taken a break from *and wear pearls*
and began a new blog *a coddiwomple life* which
more aptly describes my present existence. wink.

mrsrobinson said...

Such a lovely post to read... how lovely to read that you are healthy and happy, and to have such a positive and inspiring attitude. Truly inspiring, and happy May!

Mereknits said...

I am so happy for your! Two years is amazing. I love your attitude, worrying does nothing but rob you of time and energy. I am wishing you the very, very best.

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