22 Jan 12 Cancerversary

Today, I realized it has been two years since my diagnosis of BRCA2, DCIS Stage 1 breast cancer. So much has happened in those two years that it is difficult to take it all in.

My body is so different from that time. The boobs are now fake, and misshapen. I have scars that reach practically from one arm pit to the other. I have issues with one shoulder that probably will never go away, and a tightness in my chest muscles that plague my comfort. I have scars that resemble bullet holes where the drainage tubes used to be while I was assimilated into the BORG.  I now have the stereotypical pooch in my tummy from the hysterectomy that will probably never subside no matter how many sit ups I may attempt. Welcome to middle age.

My priorities are different, a bit. I can say that I have always been a bit of the “stop and smell the roses” type of person, and I can really appreciate that I have had that attitude as I do not feel that I have missed enjoying life. What has changed is an intense recognition of those in my life that I care about, and that care about me. I understand more about the strengths of my relationships, and the fact that I have underestimated them. I also have come to recognize that I grossly underestimate myself. I have been tried and tested in ways that I have not expected, and found myself beyond capable of handling the situations into which I have been thrust. I also am coming to realize that I do have value in the eyes of others. It’s a joy I can embrace, and a responsibility I need to acknowledge.

What I want out of life is still dangling just out of my comprehension. So many choices, yet so many possibilities.  Yet they have all changed. I don’t think anything I wanted to do two years ago is anything close to what I think about doing today. I had no idea two years ago that I would be writing a book, yet I will be a published author in about 3 weeks. I am embracing that I really enjoy encouraging others (I never really identified that about myself, but I had always been that way). I am content knowing that my love of animals will always be with me, not as my livelihood, but in my enrichment.

My marriage has completely transformed from something I judged to be a bad mistake, into a safe, warm, loving, and acceptably imperfect relationship. We are even surviving major renovations without wanting to kick each other out! That says something! We are coming up on 20 years of marriage this summer. I need to plan something, but no idea what or how since we will be in the middle of the move on our special day.

I feel as if I have undergone as much transformation as the house in which I am living. I also feel as if moving on in my life will be as changing as the upcoming move. It will be wonderful to see what I can do.

Look out world! I am on my way. Fear would be wise.



  1. jaxberry

    Imperfect is often the best. Also since you’re on your way.. I think the building of a bunker should commence now. EEP!

  2. Katie O'Berry

    I am very happy for you. I am an early DCIS breast cancer patient currently undergoing radiation therapy. So far hasn’t been anywhere near as bad as I thought it would be. Thank GOD! I can see myself two years from now celebrating life, family and friends in a way I never did before. I appreciate my husband a lot more for sure even as he drives me nuts.

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