I start my first round of chemo tomorrow morning, in just a few hours. While the time from diagnosis to surgery went pretty quickly, and it was rather extreme surgery, it was absolutely black and white what surgery was necessary. Between the Grade 3 cancer and the BRCA2 genetic test results, it was a no brainer. No regrets.
But this, this took all month at which to arrive. It was a bevy of appointments, hurry up and wait weeks, in-bed recovery, breaking that rule, swollen breasts, irritated drain sites, stubborn fluid, and random fires to put out. And then, when the tests came back, the results were showing nasty cancer, but radiology was ruled out. I thought I was in the clear. That I wasn't going to be the "typical" breast cancer patient. I was a survivor out the gate. Lop off the bad tissue, get the new girls, and defy the stereotype of bald hair, no eyebrows, scarves and wigs.
And, just when I thought I could pull out my bike and start to ride again, I found out I'm having chemo. Which meant more days stuck inside making calls, preparing, and just curling up in my bed.
All I wanted to do was to ride my bike. Just load it up, kit up, find a quiet, straight, long road and ride. I just wanted to start pedaling and get lost in the motion. I needed to feel the wind against my face, hear the whirring of the wheels, the clicking of the shifters, and to feel like I was flying, weightless. I wanted to get lost on those roads for hours, with just enough water, snacks and road that could take all day, from sunrise to sunset. I'd block out the cars. I'd forget that I had cancer. I'd blow off the doctors. I'd have a truly "cancer-free day." The word "cancer" wouldn't come up, because it would just be the sun on my skin, the forced wind through my hair, me, my music and my bike.
But, just like not avoiding chemotherapy and hairloss, I managed to not have a single day to ride my bike. To be free, again.
I'm feeling like a caged bird. A lark. "Nothing there sings, Not even my lark. Larks never will, you know, when they're captive..."
So, I sit in my damask cage, tonight, trapped. I step foot out of my house in the morning and I really become a cancer patient.
I don't even think I can call myself a cancer "fighter" anymore. I can't fight the chemo. And it's fighting the cancer.
I'm just the pin cushion.