Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The Lost Girl

Trying to figure out what to blog about these days is getting harder.  Do y'all really want to hear more about my hair coming in almost totally gray?  Or what the doctor said about when my last two drain tubes can come out?  I could blog about how my chickens seem to have made it their mission in life to scratch the mulch out of my flower beds and eat my day lilies so they'll never bloom this year.  I'm about ready to put some frickin' chickens in my freezer if they don't leave my day lilies alone.   It's a good thing my husband put a cage around my newly planted bluebonnets, or they'd be roasted already.

The fact is - sometimes I feel like without the cancer, I just don't have much to talk about.  We had friends over for burgers and beer ( well - THEY had beer - I had burgers and cokes/tea), and I found that I spent a lot more time listening than talking.  More than once I thought about jumping into the conversation, but whatever I was going to say had something to do with my cancer, or its various side effects, and I didn't want to be the chick who is always talking about her cancer.  It's like I don't know how to make small talk without bringing it up.

Geez.  Might as well call me Debbie Downer if that's all I can talk about.

Yet the cancer is a huge part of who I am now.  I don't know how to leave it out of the conversation - but I don't want it to be my only topic of conversation.  I worry that my friends are getting tired of hearing it.  I try to make a joke out of it - using my ever-present scarf as my "excuse to get out of doing stuff" or a way to laugh it off when I use the wrong word (chemo brain!) or forget a date or something we've discussed.  Who am I if I'm not the chick who laughs at cancer?

Who am I indeed.

That's what I'm trying to figure out these days.  How to be the chick who used to have cancer.  How to chat with my friends about everything and nothing and not just about cancer and its side effects.  I used to be able to do that with ease.  But that was in the Before.  I used to spend long afternoons consuming chips and hot sauce and talking about nothing with my peeps.

Here in the soon to be After, I'm not so sure how to do that.

So if you happen to run into me in real life, and I seem quieter than I used to be, that's why.  My whole world has been wrapped up in cancer and treatment and side effects and fighting to get better, and now that I'm nearly at the end of that chapter in my life, I'm a little lost. 

It's just all a part of this new normal I guess.

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