breast cancer, life, Uncategorized

Epiphanies

A asked me a question last week that I’ve been turning over and over. “Why do you take everyone else’s worries onto your shoulders?”

Then, I saw a quote image on Pinterest that said “I wonder how much of what weighs me down is not mine to carry?”

So much of what I take on is not mine to carry…so, no more. Or, no more to the best of my ability.

After my last panic attack, I took a long, hard look at myself. I didn’t like some of what I saw. I don’t like that I’m dangerously close to becoming my hypochondriac grandmother. Don’t get me wrong. I deeply loved my grandmother, but she was a hypochondriac of epic proportions. I don’t want to be like her where every little thing is something I perceive to be fatal (btw, my grandmother died in her sleep in her nineties). Yes, I had cancer. I don’t right now. I will never stop worrying about the cancer coming back, but for this moment, I am no evidence of disease. That matters.

I owe it to myself to believe I am cancer free, and my scumbag brain does not get to win with whispers of my greatest fear, of the cancer returning.

I owe it to myself to celebrate that exactly one year ago today, I had my first chemo treatment. It was hard. Chemo was hard. But, I’m still here, one year later. I’m still here, done with treatment.

I owe it to myself to remember the wisdom of Albus Dumbledore: “Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” There’s been a lot of darkness over the last year. I have nothing to lose by turning on a light and finding some happy more than I’ve allowed myself.

I owe it to myself to stress less over things I absolutely cannot control. For years, I’ve lived in a constant state of stress, much of it, my own doing. It’s beyond time I find ways and force myself to stop. I have nothing to gain by stressing and worrying about so much of what I stress and worry about because there’s zero I can do about most of it.

I owe myself. I rarely allow myself to think about what I truly, really, deeply need. And, what is it?

I need to be kind to myself.

That’s it.

I owe myself kindness.

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