Dr. H removed my port on Friday. People asked me if I was excited or ready to get back to normal. Dr. H asked me if I was tired.
Yup. I’m tired. Cancer made me tired.
What removing my port or finishing Herceptin or having reconstruction has not done is return me to normal. What does that even mean? Normal? No, I’m not ready to get back to normal.
Before cancer, normal meant worrying, all the time, about everything. Cancer made me get that under control because I cannot handle that kind of stress anymore.
Before cancer, normal meant being chronically sleep deprived. Cancer made me admit to my doctor I suffer from insomnia and allow myself to get some help so I can sleep better.
Before cancer, normal meant trying to please everyone all the time and putting myself last. Cancer made me stop trying to please everyone and to put myself first sometimes.
Before cancer, normal meant not taking care of myself. Cancer made me lose weight, learn how to meditate, and find ways to relax.
Before cancer, normal meant being okay with not being okay. Cancer made me come face-to-face with my struggles and find ways to solve them or work on them.
Before cancer, normal meant not speaking my mind because someone might get mad at me. Cancer made me not care if someone doesn’t like my opinion…or me.
I don’t want to go back to normal. I’m a better mother, wife, daughter, friend, teacher because I’m not who I was a year ago. Cancer made me realize how not okay my normal was. Why would I want to go back to that?