Daisy Wheel at the oldest cross in Ireland, Summer 2013
I prefer to mark this day on my calendar-rather than the day I found out I had cancer. It's October 9th and it means I am one more year away from cancer. Five years ago cancer was removed from my body. I am 5 years cancer free. I didn't think it was that big a deal--for years I convinced myself it was an arbitrary number made up by the scientists and doctors studying effectiveness of treatment. 95% cure rate at 5 years. At the time I heard that I thought, "That just isn't long enough." And it isn't. I have so much more to do and luckily I am blessed with being 5 years cancer free. I am actually writing this on Wednesday night and I hesitate to write that as if I might jinx it. I won't. I have plans.
Tomorrow is the day I restart my yoga practice. I am finally strong enough and dedicated enough to do it and I find it necessary. I need that peace. My trainer is gone on a trip until next Friday. So I am going to take the days in between to do cardio--walking up the hill near my house--and take Yoga. I am going tomorrow morning to a level 1 class which I think is a good choice because I still have limitations. I can do it but some poses take their toll if held too long. Now I am ready to try to move past those limitations.
The reason I finally am coming to grips with this number as being special is really due to my oncologist. When I saw her in August, she was excited for me. Really excited which then made me cautiously excited. Too many times I have seen dates approach and been disappointed. Today I am excited excited to awaken tomorrow to a new day and an approach to my continued wellness that involves inviting back an old friend. Yoga.
One of my oldest friends sent me flowers. Beautiful long stemmed pink and white roses. They brought me to tears. The thoughtfulness and kindness and the value she places on my life really means a great deal to me. We never get that much time together with family and work and such, but last Sunday evening we sat and laughed and talked and visited and supported for 5 hours just us and our husbands and my daughters. It was so special just like her.
Note For The Day---
This morning my oldest congratulated me and when I said and you too. She asked, "What did I do. I wasn't the one with cancer?"
I told her that she helped me every day. That is true. My kids gave me a reason and a responsibility to get out of bed, to keep doing the healthy things and to keep the faith. She treated me as though I wasn't sick which, actually, was a good thing. There were days when I wanted to just wallow in bed and I had no such luxury until breakfast and lunch were made and the kids off to school. Where we live it meant driving them to school which I did as soon as I could each 21 days.
My youngest was bright and cheery and kissed my bald head and told me I wasn't scary. She would ask me to play and I did as often as possible and we read books together.
Now they are 12 and 16 and the time spent is different but still fun. Oldest still needs clothes shopping days and the youngest and I watch some tv or cook together--she is better than me at certain things already. Makes terrific shortbread and meringues.
I didn't know how I would mark this day until i realized I wanted to go to yoga and on Monday I'm going to a lunch in honor of one of my surgeons and my oncology nurses. Those two things seem perfect as do the flowers from my friend. Then my husband...
This morning my husband brought me a present.
He is absolutely perfect.