Weaknesses are just strengths we have yet to harness
Saturday, I went to an 8:30 yoga class. It was so relaxing and just what I needed! I’ve never been good at meditation, but this class I was deep in thought, and everything I realized has fit in with the week I’ve been having.
First of all, I realized I will hear now and for the rest of my life that thyroid cancer is a “good cancer”. Yes, I am aware of the medical and technological advancement that has diminished the mortality rate ten fold. And yes, I am aware of the seemingly less alarming or detrimental treatment that us thyroid cancer patients have to go through compared to others. Acne has a treatment, but it still stinks when you have it. Hearing someone call it a “good cancer” belittles all of the feelings and non physical pains that come with it. I’ve fought very hard through this battle, and those two words are a slap in the face.
Secondly, everyone goes through cancer differently. Each treatment plan is customized and each person decides how they will face the path they choose. I told my doctors that I wanted to plan my cancer around my life and that’s what I’m doing. In the end, this is MY cancer journey and there is no right or wrong way to do it. I decided to accept that this is something that happens to people but it’s a speed bump, not a road block. I made this blog to help you stay informed on my physical and mental progress. The world doesn’t wait for you to gain composure. It keeps on turning everyday and you just have to decide whether you’re going to keep moving with it or not.
Thirdly, I am unique. All the events in my life and my attitude towards them have made me who I am today. Someone recently brought up a good point: college is a major life transition, especially senior year. You’ve gained a lot of experience from the three years that are now under your belt. As soon as you enter your first class freshman year, you will never be the same person again. This doesn’t mean a complete 180 for everyone, it could be something as small as changing a haircut to realizing your job is no long what you want and trying something completely new. Granted, we all have these innate tendencies that will stay with us forever no matter who we are. The difference is that some people choose to embrace these and turn them into strength while others hide behind them. College helps define who you are and who you want to be. It’s been hard for me, college and I don’t seem to get along very well and there have been several times where I was ready to throw in the towel and leave. But I didn’t and now I’m almost done!
Also during the week I have tried find a way to explain how I feel about my journey thus far. I want you all to try something for me:
- Imagine yourself at the peak of a new you. You made some resolutions and followed through. You’re finally growing into the person you’ve always wanted to be.
- Add the status of a senior in college, including all the social and academic knowledge, anxiety and stress.
- Now take a moment that has/could changed your life forever, and having to decide whether it would help you or haunt you for the rest of your days.
- Add the two previous steps together and double it.
- Take that overwhelming feeling and multiply it by the amount of people who can’t relate to the first scenario.
- Subtract from the people who have never tried to tell you they “know how you feel” or “diminished” the situation in order to handle it better.
- Subtract all physical signs of pain and suffering from emotions and medicine
- Add all the people in your life who are afraid of change or have a problem embracing change
That my dear reader, is a vague idea of what my cancer experience has been. I have two major life changes: college and cancer. I guess I couldn’t just pick one haha Always choosing the most difficult path I guess.
It’s hard sometimes for me to feel pride in what I do. It’s hard to let go of even the smallest comments that make all my hard work feel insignificant. I’ve been feeling several of the grieving stages all at once lately. I know I try to keep the optimism flowing, but sometimes I want to be real with all of you. Not everyday can be a wonderful day, that’s what makes them so great. No cancer journey is all smiles, but it makes a grin that much more rewarding.
I’m really fortunate to have my support team that reaches all over! I don’t really know what I would have done without these people to be by my side without always trying to analyze and understand. Your appreciation for multiple perspectives has been so helpful in my cancer journey and my life journey. I know most of you aren’t here in Burlington with me, but I can still feel your support from miles and miles away!
On a happier note (because why should anything ever end on a sad one?!), my dad made cancer jerseys!! My Aunt Linda has been calling me the “Chernobyl Chicken”, and we liked it so much we put it on a t-shirt! (No disrespect to any victims or their families).
Over break, my mom and I went to the John Singer Sargent exhibit at the MFA in Boston. He had some beautiful artwork. I felt like a super creep for taking pictures, but I did it for my blog!
I think my favorite thing in the entire exhibit was the introduction. Specifically the last sentence.
I think that we should all treat loved ones and cherished moments like rays of sunshine captured and held.
Hope everyone stays warm! It’s -11 here!!!!