Tuesday, September 27, 2016

The Club

I probably don’t want to join your club.
I’m probably a bit too
overly sensitive and
unnecessarily analytical to be a reliable club contributor.
I probably want to stay home and
just read my

Those in charge of fate decided it would be funny if I was forced to join a club.
Those in charge of these things chose the CANCER club.

I was highly reluctant.

Despite my hesitation, I was a good club member.  I cried.  I was numb. I researched the traditional.  I researched the alternative.   I announced it on social media with a statement mohawk and just the right amount of verbal ambiguity that was worthy of any new product launch.  I thought positively. I thought negatively. I went to bed angry and woke up terrified. I found ways to be happy.  I convinced myself that realistic trumped naive and hopeful trumped realistic.  I wrote the required cancer blog.

I followed the club rules.

I recently passed the one year anniversary of finishing chemotherapy.  One year later, cancer still invites itself into my day.  Scar tissue says good morning. Green tea glares at me during breakfast. My favorite boots mock my feet that hurt when I wear them now.  A good club member would acknowledge this important anniversary day, pin on a pink ribbon and spew forth a grateful outpouring of thankfulness.  

Thankful they were alive.

I stayed silent.  

I had
nothing to

There are a shocking number of women with my story. They’ve had cancer at a relatively young age and sometimes they write about it on their blogs.  It has been helpful to read their blogs and know I am not alone and I am not going crazy. These women openly wrote about their diagnosis, surgeries, chemo, radiation, and many complementary therapies and alternative treatments.

They wrote about feeling powerless and how they were afraid the
overwhelming vulnerability
The wrote about their families.  
Their written words, cried and screamed out loud for their children.
They fought for their lives.
They fought for every single
breath they could

These women became my invaluable therapy.
They were my online friends.

I was so grateful these
women had
something to

One year ago I followed 12 blogs.  
Today, there are 6 blogs left.  

One woman has stopped writing because it was too stressful when people commented that she had caused her own cancer and had chosen the wrong treatments.

5 women have stopped writing


6 of my blog friends still have something to say..
These are women like me. These are people like you.
These are women who don’t want to become a tragedy.
These are women who massage that scar tissue away even though they think they might be massaging a new tumor. They drink that green tea even though it tastes like dirt and they doubt it will help at all. And they put on those boots, no matter how much they hurt, because they are determined that NOTHING will keep them from wearing their Doc Marten's.

No, I still don’t want to join your club. One year after chemo I am still here as a highly reluctant cancer club member.  Maybe, though, I shouldn’t ignore these anniversaries. Maybe I should be more aggressive in spewing forth a grateful outpouring of thankfulness. Maybe I should honor my blog friends by saying something,


They would want that.