Tomorrow it will be one month until my surgery. This time next month I’ll be pretending to relax in a house somewhere in Phoenix while everyone nervously flutters around me. I will be in a panic. Today, I am already likely panicking. Or maybe not. I spent most of last night and today sick to my stomach. Is it Herbert? I’m not sure, his pushing on my brainstem and relentless commitment to my vestibular nerve could be the culprit because the incessant spinning I thought I had mastered has returned full force. Maybe I have the flu, maybe I was poisoned. Who knows. Either way it has been a less than ideal way to start my Fall Break. Not much of a break really, the looming weeks of finals ahead are weighing heavy over my mind. Then it occurred to me somewhere between the Netflix I was watching while lying in fetal position and my trips to the bathroom where I laid on the floor in fetal position, that it’s almost time. It is almost time to face what is happening. Ouch, the stomach pain gets infinitely worse when I think about it.
I started being scared less of the outcome and more of the process. I had been so concerned about the endgame that I failed to think about what it would be like to be there, to be put under, to relinquish control of your body and give yourself over to an “expert.” I am not so sure I want to do that. I am not so sure I have a choice but if I did I would chose to not have this in the first place. I know, wishful thinking, right? Wasted time is what that is, we can’t live in what ifs, it’s just wasteful. Just torturous. I am terrified of going under. Starting a day in one way and ending it in another. It’s strange. It’s like flying, you wake up in one place, go sit on a place and go to bed in a new place. It’s strange, it’s often disconcerting, isolating, you can become wholly disembodied through the process. How can you find solid ground when things keep changing?
So today I mostly slept and then got irritated when people told me that, no, you feel fine, you are fine. The incessant desire to glaze over what is happening with some kind of faith in something unseen to me is just annoying. You don’t “know” that I will be fine. No matter what you have been through there is no undeniable truth to what you have to say. You don’t have a guarantee, you don’t have a good answer for me, bring me an expert, maybe then I’ll listen, but you? You don’t have an answer for me. AND PLEASE, stop regaling me with stories of all the people you knew that had ear infections and couldn’t hear and got their hearing back. Is that what is happening to me? Oh, is your friend’s wax buildup equivalent to the growth that is systematically finding ways to demolish my brain to make room for it’s new condo complex? Herbert is both squatter and real estate developer. AND HE IS NOT GOING AWAY. You can will me better all you want, and I appreciate the thought and gesture behind it, but fundamentally denying the truth of my situation, building me up with a false sense of security and hope? That is not optimistic, that is unrealistic. I’ve spent weeks preparing myself for the various REAL outcomes and refuse to back track. I am moving forward, with Herbert, with my new normal. THAT IS OPTIMISM. Accepting your conditions, you life, your fate (if you are dead set on having some kind of certain reliance on the spiritually unseen) and living with them. Living a full life whether you can hear about it on your right side or not. That is belief, knowing that you can make it despite the insistence from your body that it is tired. I can live with this, hell, I can confront this, but that doesn’t mean it is not real. Pretending it’s fine will get me NOWHERE. Stop pushing me to change my attitude. My attitude is fine. I laugh daily, I cry seldom. I try like hell to be self reflexive. I am facing life HEAD ON, I am not skulking around, I am not giving up, and I am not pretending that nothing will change. I am owning my future, whatever it may be. I invite you to do the same for your life. Own it. Face it. Be who you always wanted to be.
My blogger profile begins with the quote “here she lies where she wanted to be.” where she wanted to be. Not where anyone wanted her, not where fate placed her, not where Herbert thought she would be. HERE I STAND, WHERE I WANT TO BE. I am taking my power back bitches, and ain’t nobody going to stand in my way. And no, don’t correct the grammar in that sentence. I know, I did that for effect. Seriously.
I don’t know more than I did about my future this week versus last, I don’t understand my diagnoses any differently but I do know a few things. I am strong, I will fight for me and I will be amazing. I am committed to myself, my family, my friends and my health. I am committed to you if you are committed to me. I know that when I go into surgery I will be surrounded by so much love that I won’t be able to give up when I feel scared. I know that I have a lot of people who care. I know I care about them too. I know that people mean well when they use their various tools for coping to change what this means to them. To argue my future, my present, my condition. So I know I don’t fault them. I know that this month will likely be hell. I know that I will have good and bad moments. I know that in the end, it is out of my hands. It is in the doctor’s hands. Maybe acknowledging that I can’t do much now would be relaxing but that is not really my style. You know, relaxed… I’m more the compulsive worker outer, organic eater, and workaholic type of coper. But can you blame me? I am owning the only things I can. I hope my six pack makes it through the surgery. I wonder when I can work out again after it’s over?
One month out you guys, home stretch. Or is it just the beginning? I guess we’ll see.
Peace and love