Monday, August 24, 2009

Blah Blah Blah

So much going on right now. All of it making me weepy. All of it leaving me feeling emotionally drained. Most of it good stuff. Some of it sad stuff.

Today my mom had her regular mammogram. The days and hours leading up to her mammo are anxiety filled as we all wonder what will happen. Of course our minds drift to the worst case scenario, hoping we will never have to relive that experience. But something that has always stuck in my mind after my mom's initial diagnosis continues to haunt me, and her, and makes it difficult to not go to dark places in my mind. Years after she had been diagnosed, my mom said "Once your body betrays you like that, it's never the same." She continued to explain that every pain you feel your mind automatically thinks it's cancer. Is every cold a precursor for something much worse? She had pain in her back once and was convinced that her cancer had moved into her bones. I hate that she has to life with that kind of fright everytime something might be wrong with her. It makes me incredibly sad.

But I'm happy to report that today's mammo came back clean. An email popped into my inbox with the words "Everything's A-OK" in the subject and a huge sigh of relief could be heard around the world. My mom, sisters and I exchanged a few emails back and forth expressing how happy and relieved we were and there may have been mention of my mom getting the biggest glass of white zinfandel she could get her hands on. Her very quick response, "Don't worry- I will."

On Wednesday it'll be five years since my father passed away. Today it hit me and before I knew what was happening, tears were sliding down my face. At one point I glanced at Katie's Facebook status and saw: Katie Corridan knows "Life is not the way it's supposed to be. It's the way it is. The way you cope with it is what makes a difference." We must count ourselves the lucky ones, for we were with you in your prime. We found that quote among my dad's belongings after he passed away. And we all knew that this quote must have guided him through the last months of his life. It brought us all a lot of comfort and, in fact, we put it on the program to his memorial service.

People say, myself included, that time makes it easier to deal with the death of someone you love. I've always felt, for the most part, that with time you just get used to that person not being around. The pain dulls. The bad memories fade. The sadness doesn't hurt quite as much as before. But what I have also found is that the heaviness in your heart, or the shortness of your breath you get when you think of the people that will never get to meet the loved one you have lost or the experiences you'll never be able to share never ever goes away. And that's a feeling I wish would get better with time- like the rest of 'em.

My sister Kara sent adorable pictures of my nieces from their latest vacation to the shore. For the first time in recent pictures, Lila came alive. Her adorable personality shining through, finally giving Julia a run for her money. I couldn't help but think how impossibly sad it makes me feel that my dad will never get to know them. As a father he was often times grumpy, overworked and annoyed. He craved his alone time since he worked like a dog. But I could picture him being a fun loving grandfather. Someone who would have a lot of fun with his grandchildren. If I close my eyes and concentrate, I can see him and Julia giving each other a hard time and Lila staring him down. I can picture him taking them out for ice cream and getting a kick out of how much they love it.

I know that grief comes and goes in waves. And I know I can do nothing else other than to embrace it, deal with it, talk about it, write about it and let myself BE.


A very dear co-worker of mine, this wonderful woman who I have learned so much from, sent a thank you letter for donating to her 3-Day walk. A walk she did for her sister, who passed away 48 hours after the walk concluded. At the end of the letter she said that her sister would be continuing her good work out of sight. And I found tremendous comfort in this thought. That the people we love continue doing what they do, it's just out of sight.

Wednesday I leave for Denver to participate as a Crew member in the 3-Day and this makes me happy. I know it will be emotional, challenging, tiring and fun. I know the days will be long with early starts. I will probably be cranky sometimes. I will definitely get dirty. Yet at the end of the four days I'll be on event, I know that something inside of me will change. How can it not? Watching women who are currently going through treatment walk 60 miles over the course of three days. Seeing endless pictures of the people we all walk for- some still around, some not. Getting to see children, husbands, friends and other family line the streets and cheer on their loved ones walking. You really do get to see humanity at its best and I'm ready for a big fat does of that. It's what makes the 3-Day so magical.

And I just need to remember that being sad, angry, happy, anxious, whatEVER is fine. This time of year is always a challenge. I just need to be.



Rebecca August 25, 2009 at 11:58 AM  

so beautiful and sad.... life! Thinking of you...

cari August 26, 2009 at 8:20 PM  

I'll just Be with you any time, any where Molly Fast. Am so touched by and thankful for you today. xoxo

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