April 11th, 2018
I'm in remission. I am better. And yet I still feel like an imposter, like I don't belong somehow.
Cancer fucks your shit up, whether you want it to or not. For some people, it doesn't rearrange their life in any major way. For the rest of us, the way we feel and live is irrevocably changed. If we use it for the better, and we can beat it,cancer can in fact clarify and enrich your life in the long run. But it also requires a reassessment of everything you believe in, are about, and have ever cared for. It pushed me into a hole, and in order to climb out I had to literally rediscover my mind, what I liked about myself, and what I believe in. I wish it hadn't been so hard, and it continues to be incredibly hard - but in comparison to how it used to be, life now is a fucking cakewalk. If you've ever woken up with anxiety so bad you don't want to get out of bed, but by some stroke of cosmic luck found how to get past it and sometimes even feel happy when you awaken, you'll know what I mean.
Right now I can't get a date for the life of me. Those I like don't like me back, and those that like me I don't like either. I was married, to a gorgeous, caring woman, but I couldn't take it after I got sick. I miss her with every bit of my soul, yet I know she wasn't right for me. It fucking sucks. The hardest part of all this is that the part I thought would be the easiest is the hardest, and vice versa. Suffice it to say it's all messing with me, still, pretty damn bad. But I choose to just keep on working on myself, and let that part of life come back when it can. Do I have a choice? Probably not. But the alternative is to crawl back into my little hole, and I choose not to do that. It's hard to stay out, even as I write this, but I choose to stay out all the same.
Don't give in, and remember the best things about yourself. The physical struggles and mental illness that can go along with cancer, including depression, anxiety, addiction, anhedonia, and everything in between, can make you feel like you will never be better. But your mind, and possibly still your body, are lying to you. Cancer is just a bunch of cells gone haywire, for no apparent reason. We can't be sure we can beat it, but we can set ourselves up to give it our best shot, and given that, if the worst should come, make the world a better place for having fought the good fight.
Spring is a time of rebirth. For me, for you, for everyone. To all of you fighting a battle of your own, don't stop. The end, the end of your suffering, or a loved one's suffering, or whatever you're going through, could be just around the corner. Just keep fighting - that's all that matters. And if you ever need a shoulder to cry on, mine has about two dozen layers of padding now, so I don't mind if you use it anytime you need, lol.
Does this little missive help you? Does it help me? I have no idea, but it's my outlet into the world. I interact with the world by writing. The more I do, the better I feel. You might write songs, or poetry, or take your kids to the park, or play sports. Whatever it is, it's yours, and your little corner of the world. Keep doing it! It's more important than you can possibly know.
There's a funny little saying attributed to Lucille Ball that has actually proven to be very useful as I've been working through what's happened in my life the last few years. "The more you do, the more you can do." I've come to view this as: work hard against the tough stuff with everything you've got left, and you'll be amazed at the extra energy that shows up to help you do everything else. It's been working for me lately, and I hope her words are helpful at some point for you, too.
Thanks for listening.
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