Health update: I’m almost 6 months into my post-radiation meds. After making some adjustments, they are now tolerable. From what I’ve heard and read, some people say the first 6 months are the worst, so I’m hoping things get a little better from here. I’ve had several women tell me they couldn’t even make it this far on these drugs, so I’m grateful I’ve been able to stay on them, even if they do make life pretty awful some days. Still doing PT and OT, though not as often. I’m anticipating another surgery in late May/early June, then I’ll plop myself on the deck for another summer of recovery. The thought of that brings very mixed emotions, but it is what it is. My doc wants me to have an MRI before surgery, which came as a surprise to me since I was told I wouldn’t have scans unless something warranted them. But this way, if something is found, it can be dealt with during one surgery, and not a myriad of follow-up tests and procedures. So, if you feel like praying for something, pray the MRI is clear, and pray my insurance will pay for it. Apparently insurance companies are more likely to pay for a scan on someone who’s never had cancer than someone who’s been through treatment. Good grief. Moving on…
I am sitting poolside at my brother and sister-in-law’s house in Phoenix. We made the trip down to visit Houston, who is loving college life at GCU. I think the timing was good because I got the feeling he was getting a little homesick. He texted me one day last week and said, “I’m listening to all of the songs from The Middle of My Life.” (An album I released several years ago) I replied, “What is wrong with you? Are you okay?” Turns out maybe he thinks his mom is semi-cool after all. Anyway, I am grateful for these few days to hug him, talk about life, laugh, and watch him do his thing. Perry and I even got a shout out on the ESPN+ broadcast he was doing Saturday night, as we sat in the stands at a GCU softball game. Good work, kid.
A year ago this week, I was knee deep in chemo and anticipating that in a year, things would look pretty “normal” again. If you’ve kept up with this blog at all, you know the journey didn’t go quite as smoothly as I had hoped, but that’s okay. Normal is overrated anyway. While I wish there were no more appointments, meds, or surgeries in my future, there is a strange comfort and dare I say, excitement, in having the curtain pulled back, if even just a little, to see your own mortality. You make decisions differently. You gauge disappointments differently. Relationships take a higher priority. And hopefully, you see time as the fleeting wonder that it is, then choose your path accordingly.
While I haven’t been blogging as often in recent weeks, I’ve been writing a lot. Songs, books, musicals. And I’m having a blast. Okay, most days I’m having a blast. Like most creatives, there are many days when I fight my inner critic who says, “Why waste your time on this stuff? No one wants to hear or read this anyway. None of this is of any value to anyone. You’re a 54-year-old woman who should probably come to terms with the fact the no one really cares what you have to say.” Yep, that voice is loud. And really annoying. And some days, it’s pretty convincing. Other days, I feel like I can and should do anything I want to, dog gone it. I especially feel this way after watching things like the Olympics, or a half-time performance at the Super Bowl where a bunch of middle-aged folks have just killed it. Combine those moments with the One Voice that compels me to keep creating and I’m pretty confident I’m not done writing and unleashing new work.
So, in the weeks and months to come, you’ll be seeing and hearing more from me. I’m really excited about that. After all, time is a fleeting wonder. And I will choose my path accordingly.