Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Pollyanna




Pol·ly·an·na
/ˌpälēˈanə/
noun
an excessively cheerful or optimistic person.






It just slipped out.




I didn't think about it ahead of time.
It wasn't over analyzed at
3 am in the morning.
It was out of
character,

for me.




When she spoke, I felt my heart beat faster.

I inhaled, deeply.

When she said that, I grabbed her wrist.

I held on, tightly.

When she stared down at me, I surprised myself.

I needed to tell her, now, apparently.






And that is the exact moment Pollyanna showed up.




On December 1st it will be 3 years since I finished treatment for my little spat with breast cancer.
(aggressive, rare, likes to return within 5 years, little known on causes, treatment..... blah, blah, blah)
One only has to search the word "cancer" on the right side of the blog to read past posts and know that at times I've been a bit angry about the drastic turn my life took a few years ago.  I'll never be a part of the "pink warrior" campaign. I've not seen this diagnosis as a time to repent and make a life changing U-Turn.  I've not been grateful for one single second of the experience.  It sucks and has taken a big toll on me both physically and mentally.

I've been a bit obstinate,
and reluctant you
might say, to
see the
good.



If I were forced to admit, however, to any positives that resulted from cancer and if you really, really pushed me, I would tell you that I've met some amazing people.  People like me.  People not like me.  People I'd never associate with in a million years.  Yet, we had this little spat with cancer in common. We often whine about our lingering side effects and ailments when we are together. We complain about our sore hips and our dead toenails and our lingering anxiety knowing full well, that perhaps, we are the lucky ones.

Because, many of our friends are dead.

Yet, still, I remain stubbornly reluctant to be grateful for my cancer diagnosis.




Pollyanna had different plans.



My poor non cancer friend said to me the other day, "Getting old sucks.  We're gonna be 50 years old soon!"  She listed the usual complaints.  I commiserated and said I too had the same issues.  She added,  "Seriously!  I hate getting old!  I wish I never had to get old!!"

I inhaled.  I grabbed her wrist.
And Pollyanna erupted.


"NOOOOOOO!!!!!!"   I breathed, out loud, slow and low and a bit ferociously out of my mouth.

 "No!  

We are

SO 
LUCKY

to be getting old!  It is such a privilege to get old!

Never, never,
ever wish for
anything
else!"


It just slipped out.
I'm not sure where it came from.
I felt silly when I said it.


Was it possible cancer had finally made something good out of my diagnosis?
Was it possible cancer had finally made me grateful for my life?
Was it possible I was finally a better person because of my cancer experience?


I've been a bit obstinate, you know.
I've been a bit ungrateful, you know.
I've been a a tad bit angry...for sure.

But Pollyanna has made an appearance.



Stay tuned.








1 comment:

Charles Brister said...

From a lifelong Pollyanna ... welcome to the club!! Love your writing Melissa. Keep it up!