I made myself a promise: if I made it through all the surgeries and the year of treatment, I’d get a tattoo. At first, I wanted one that said mind over matter, but I changed my mind to wanting a phoenix.
I kept seeing the scene in Harry Potter where Harry is in Dumbledore’s office just as Fawkes (Dumbledore’s phoenix) bursts into flames and seemingly dies. Of course, a few minutes later, Fawkes reemerges as a wrinkly, featherless baby phoenix. Then, we see him later in all his colorful glory.
I know my cancer could come back and kill me. I know I may not be able to come back from the ashes if cancer visits me again, but I’m a different person now than I was a year ago. That’s why I wanted the phoenix. It’s not because I made it through this last year. It’s because cancer fundamentally changed me, and I emerged me, but a different me. I’m still trying to figure out this me.
The tattoo is a lot bigger than I thought I wanted, but I loved the design. So, here it is (sorry, Mom…don’t be too mad at me!) 💜