Here we go again.
The “I’m so sorry…”
the “What can I do?”
the “You’ll get through this.”
coupled with more veteran statements:
“You beat it before; you’ll do it again.”
“Time to dust off that Wonder Womyn cape!”
“It’s not fair, you having to go through this again.”
And all the while, I sit on the other end of the phone line, biting chunks of my lower lip off in hope that will prevent the tears from cascading down my cheeks again.
But it does give me a fucked up looking lower lip and trails of pimples from where the salty water flowed down my skin.
So it’s back.
Or, more accurately, it never left.
I guess my intense stubbornness is deeper than my persistent arguments with people, deeper than my Freudian personality, deeper than my childhood. It’s as deep as the cells used to create my DNA … because even when I go under the knife,
even when i elect to have the left breast removed as a preventive measure,
even when I agree to six months of aggressive chemo and six additional months of maintenance chemo,
even when I allow six weeks of radiation to burn holes into my skin that then force me into hyperbaric oxygen chambers for hours a day, months on end,
even when I give up an ovary and cut my Fallopian tubes as more preventive measures,
even when I sacrifice my hair, my health, my relationship, my reputation, my identity, EVERYTHING,
even when I endure ALL of this just to kill off a small group of cells living deep within me,
They hibernate. They wait. They travel by night, in Cartel cars down pitch-black unmarked streets, using specialized gear like night-vision goggles to travel their product along, sometimes speeding so quickly and so quietly that no one even notices they just passed through another town.
And when they are sure no one has seen them, when they are sure they are safe, they stealthily unload their product into some unsuspecting storage area to await final distribution.
The storage area? a femur head, tucked deep within a girl’s right hip
The final distribution? All across the landscape, via 206 otherwise perfectly intact bones (I’m guessing)
When I started having hip pain a few months ago, I was sure it was yet another consequence from my impulsive decision to jump off a ledge at ASU Gammage after watching a dance performance. What can I say? I was feeling inspired. The inspiration bruised my heel bone and put me in a boot.
“Correlation is not causation,” one particular, annoyingly smart friend would remind me. I didn’t believe him. The unraveling of events, pain, tests, and treatment seemed to all sync up and remind me that these were the consequences I would be forced to face if I didn’t remember to act my age.
No more jumping off ledges.
It turns out that jumping off that ledge may have been the best thing I could have done that night.
It turns out that the presence of yet another incredible person being there – at the right time, in the right place – may have saved my life. AGAIN.
The only question is this: Am I really going to agree to go back into battle?