When I first understood I had endometrial cancer, the first place I turned was the internet. Before I reached out to friends or family in the 3-D world, I reached for my computer. Granted, I was sitting in a room with no people and a computer–but regardless–the internet was where I took my fears–searching for answers, for comfort, for someone who had taken the path I was suddenly being pushed down.
And in those moments, when I stumbled upon material that said things that are hard to say and answered questions I couldn’t yet ask out loud, I was so GRATEFUL for those people–those writers–on the forums, or on blogs–that they were braver, or more outgoing than I generally am–that they would “put it out there” so someone like me could read about their lives and feel less alone.
When I felt that gratitude, I decided that regardless of outcome, I wanted to give back to the internet, that I was going to write the kind of posts that I found myself looking for–unflinching and close to the bone. I wasn’t ready to “go live” yet–the emotions were too raw…and the writing was too crappy. As a writer, even if I were dying, I’d be ashamed to publish prose that was completely as unshaped as my real journal entries are.
But I’m NOT DYING–that’s the main thrust of this post. I’ve been journaling in the present on this particular subject, and blogging–based on those journals– from the past. So my blog posts are about a month old. This won’t matter to the the young woman a year from now who hears the words You have cancer and starts looking for blogs on the topic and finds all these posts after the fact under one label in the archives.
But I’ve just realized that for people who actually know me, but whom I haven’t spoken to personally it probably does matter. You might be reading these posts without knowing what’s going on now–which is that I am okay. The end of this story is a happy one. As of yesterday’s lab reports I can officially say the cancer is gone. I won’t have to do chemo. I’m already walking around, and am about to be driving.
So, I wanted you to know that. And to thank you for your caring comments, and in one case–FLOWERS!
(BTW, if I haven’t mentioned it to you, it’s not that I wouldn’t. I’m not a secretive person, but it feels weird to mention at every opportunity: “Oh sorry, I can’t come to your birthday/karaoke party/baby shower because I have to deal with my cancer.” Way to take someones happy occasion and make it all sad and about me, y’know? And I emailed about a dozen people and told them, and can say that in about half those cases, it already seemed weird. It’s hard to know exactly what to do, and nothing feels exactly right, but fortunately, you can just kind of let it go by saying, whatever, I have cancer, okay?)