One Way Journey
First of all, the elephant in the room is that YES... I am just a few days away from the surgery now. I can't believe it's nearly here, after so much research and planning and thinking about it and talking about it and also panicking about it. I am fortunately feeling really peaceful and that is as ready as I can be. I had a lot I wanted to write about, but my nervous energy has been channeled into deep cleaning the house and buying miscellaneous things I've convinced myself I will need in recovery. So in the next day or so, I plan to cram in as much writing as I can. ;-) This one is fortunately less of me talking... and instead a really beautiful video that was shared with me.
When I decided to share my surgery publicly, I did so because I knew how much power a community has. I wasn't able to find many resources for my situation or that I related to, so I wanted to share my story in hopes that I would become a future resource for other women in the same boat. I did not anticipate the support I would receive in return. The amount of kind messages I've gotten, from old friends to people I've never met, is humbling and overwhelming to say the least. I feel supported and I am so grateful for that.
One message I received was really monumental. A woman named Sarah sent me a link to a video that her friends Michelle and Mark had made. Michelle had the BRCA gene, but wasn't able to do the surgery I am doing in time. I set some time aside to watch the 30 minute film, and cried the entire way through. (Like, really CRIED.) It gave me such a hearty dose of perspective -- I had been focused on the fears of the surgery itself, and not the reasoning behind my choice to do it. I am so grateful to have watched this, and that this couple shared their story so openly. I encourage you to check it out. Below the video, you'll find some of my favorite quotes for reference:
"Your genes are doing exactly what they were meant to do."
"It taught me the importance of not just thinking of someone, but really showing up for them."
"People resonate with this experience because they know, deep down, they too carry the same strength within their spirit. The difference is I was given the experience called cancer, to express the capacity of strength we all carry. You can replace the word cancer with a million other difficult experiences, and within that instant, we can all relate."
"You can be brave and scared at the same time."
"When you're in the thick of what life has handed you, be courageous to seek out the beauty hidden in the mess. Because when it's all said and done, you walk this earth once and only you hold the keys to your happiness."
"Say thank you until you mean it. It's easy to say thank you when things are going your way. It takes digging deep to say it when you don't like what life has handed you."