A flower hug is a nice gentle hug, no worries of squishing anything, hugging too hard, or of holding on too long :-). While I always love big, hefty hugs, this is the one I received yesterday and it was just perfect timing, as I was feeling a tad bit sore. What an awesome post-double-mastectomy hug – thank you Judy! It has been an interesting fluctuation of feelings and emotions that have flowed through my body and mind over this past week, so the flower hug truly was perfect in many ways.
As I try to chose words to describe these feelings and emotions, they would include: disbelief, sorrow, anger, stress debilitation, relief, euphoria, fear, love, immense gratitude, stubbornness, sadness, apprehension, frustration – I think that has covered most of them. Becoming more self-aware of what lies behind these emotions has actually been the interesting part. Understanding what evokes those feelings – particularly the ‘negative’ ones – leads us to understanding how to disarm them and turn them around into something better. For example, knowledge can often disarm fear; evolution can overcome stubbornness; and yes, Lorazepam can help to overcome anxiety – particularly before major surgery haha!
Equally enlightening however, has been the contemplation of words others have chosen to describe me after reading my blogs thus far. Adjectives such as: truly inspirational, courageous, amazing, strong, beautiful, invincible, authentic, full of spirit and incredibly brave. The last one was the one that had me the most baffled: incredibly brave – ME? The people closest to me know me as the biggest chicken around, lol, so ‘incredibly brave‘ probably makes them stop and assess that particular adjective as well!
I don’t feel ‘brave’, let alone ‘incredibly brave’. I feel like I’m just bumbling along and trying to deal with it in the best way I can. When I look in the mirror and see two big white bandages in the place where two beautiful breasts used to be – I don’t feel brave. When I walked into the surgeon’s office and firmly stated that I wanted a double mastectomy, I didn’t exactly feel brave. When I woke up the morning before surgery and could barely breathe I definitely did not feel brave. When I walked into the operating room, I didn’t feel brave. Yet, when I woke up from surgery, to my own bewilderment, I DID feel brave. I had a few people who truly inspired me and made me look deep inside to evaluate which side to be on with this. If I chose the ‘negative’ side, it would lead me to a bad place, with probably not so good of an ending. So I chose the ‘positive’ side and have amazed even myself at how that positivity turns into even MORE positivity. So I thank you for making me take the time to stop, evaluate your statements, self-reflect again and say “YES, perhaps I AM braver than I even believed :-)!”
As my journey continues and leads me forward to face the other scary things like chemotherapy, radiation therapy, etc., I promise I will try my best to continue to be brave. I WILL win and not only kick C to the curb, but KEEP it there!
P.S. As I finished writing this emotional post, one of my most favourite songs came on Pandora, and I thought it was rather befitting….enjoy: