Hello fellow bloggers. It’s been a lazy summer, at least for blogging. I haven’t been around much to write or read. I’m hoping to change that soon. I’m not working too much but with the work I do have, I’m pretty busy with prep so, by the time I’m done, I still have all of my home stuff and exercise to do. It’s not leaving room for other things like writing. But I’m making time now.
I’d like to start with the blogging challenge from Nancy’s Point, one of my favorite breast cancer blogs. Last year I wrote random facts about myself so I will try to be innovative. I’m pretty much an open book. But, here it goes.
- I have a dent in my head because of a freak zip lining accident I had in Costa Rica. The guide forgot to put the brake out for me and I hit a tree. I needed stitches which I got in a shack in the jungle. It was the first time I ever tried something adventurous and the last.
- My husband and I decided to try to have a baby while folding laundry in a 24 hour laundromat. I always wanted children when I was young but after grad school, I wasn’t sure. I’m glad we made the choice to try because 3 months later, I was pregnant with Oliver.
- I hoped for a natural birth; no drugs, no IV, with a whirlpool tub and candlelight. What I got was a completely medicalized birth. My blood pressure skyrocketed 2 weeks before delivering and my organs started freaking out. Oliver was 16 days late so I had 5 methods of induction. The nurses were all over me constantly. After 23 hours of trying, I finally gave in and got an epidural. Three hours later, I had a c-section. Totally not the experience I hoped for. One of the things that makes me sad is that I’ll never know what it is like to deliver naturally.
- I don’t own a home but desperately want to.
- I have never lived outside of New York City. I even went to college here. If I could move anywhere, I’d love to live in Portland, Oregon.
- I hated Lord of the Rings. The movie. While beautiful, it bored me to tears. I think I’m the only one who feels this way.
- I love fresh, baked chocolate chip cookies and can eat the whole cookie tray in one sitting.
- I’m envious of people who get to travel globally for work and wish I got to travel much more.
- I’m like a sponge for other people’s emotions. If someone is in pain, depressed, excited, I immediately pick up on in and take on that emotion. I can easily put myself in someone else’s shoes.
- I want to be a zombie on The Walking Dead.
- If I could have an affair with any star, past or present, it would be Gene Kelly. I love everything about him.
- I get motion sick very easily. The worst is on boats. I won’t go on a boat in choppy water.
- I’m sickened by the state of the world right now. I don’t know how humans can treat each other with such disdain and disrespect. I look at pictures of Syrian, Afghani, Iraqi refugees and I feel so uncontrollably desperate to save them. I know that is not possible.
- When I’m stressed out, I need to cry before I can find a solution.
- I can’t dance. Seriously. My top half and bottom half won’t coordinate. But in my mind, I’ve got rhythm and grace.
- BONUS: I love farmer’s markets. They are my happy place. I can’t get enough of all the fresh produce. I think it’s beautiful.
Now for some of the stupid, breast cancer related shit I’ve been dealing with. For the last (almost) 2 years, I’ve heard and read about women complaining about treatment related weight gain, whether it be from chemotherapy or tamoxifen or other drugs. I’ve considered myself among the lucky. I managed to lose a little bit of weight during chemo (not much and it was because everything tasted gross) and, even on tamoxifen, I managed to drop one size last summer due to exercise and healthy eating. After my DIEP Flap reconstruction this year, I decided to be a little lax with my food choices. That, mixed with not moving around much led to some weight gain. I knew that was going to happen but I figured I’d deal with it when I recovered. What I didn’t take into account or realize was that my new medication, Zoladex, could also play a role in weight gain.
When I tried my summer clothes on this spring and realized just how much weight I truly gained, I decided to take my health very seriously. I began exercising 4-6 times a week, eating smaller portions and eating more fruits and vegetables. I figured that, by mid-summer, if I kept this up, I’d be back to my previous weight and down some more. After 2 months of consistent exercise and healthy eating, I didn’t notice too much change in my body so, I decided to weigh myself again. Not only had I not lost weight, I had gained 6 pounds.
Let me tell you what upsets me about this. Aside from my feelings about my physical appearance (which I do not like right now), I’m really pissed about my lack of control. You see, I hate running. I hate it! But it’s all I really have the time and money for. It’s free and I can be outside. But I hate doing it. What I loved about it was that I felt like I was taking control of my health. When it comes to breast cancer, there is so little we have control over so when I can control something, I feel omnipotent. So, to find out that I have been working so hard and that it has yielded no results, well, I lost my shit.
As my therapist commented, “it’s a bitch and a half.” To work at something day after day. Something that all the books and magazines PROMISE will get you results. But I am the fucking exception to the rule. Hard work is not rewarded when you’re on an ovarian suppressor or dealing with other breast cancer treatment.
It never ceases to amaze me. That no matter how far I get from my diagnosis date, breast cancer still creeps up in my life to remind me who is boss. It reminds me that life really isn’t in my control. It reminds me that my body no longer belongs to me. That no matter how hard I try, it will never be mine again.