Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Day 116: Healthy Hooters and Other Life News

I'll start with the very great good news: My biopsy came back negative!

And it's all good news, really, but I still have to have a surgical consult to figure out what this little bugger is inside Left Boob and why it's growing so relatively quickly. (I can't feel it at all; it's still pretty darn small.) But my darling nurse practitioner said, repeatedly, "There is no worrisome tissue," and I'm taking my cue from her; I am officially Not Worried. So don't you be either.

Honestly, the worst part of the biopsy was holding my shoulder in one position for 20 minutes; I was flooded with adrenaline and anxiety, waiting for it to pop out. But it stayed in place and all was well, and then I had a wonderful lunch and dinner with two sets of great friends. And the day before, Writer Jenny and I walked to Sutherland Woods, the loveliest little forested area just a few blocks from my house, which I never even knew existed!! And the day after, I heard my darling firstborn angel sing with the Madrigals (so! beautiful!) and our state rep, who's my buddy, blew me a kiss while he was being interviewed, which cracked me up, and it's been a whirlwind couple of days, and — whew!

Sadly, my Saturday zumba class with Eddie Dance Party was canceled, so now I'm taking a class on Monday nights. The first one was last night and I definitely got a good workout, but the jury's out on the instructor; she's got this giant false smile that doesn't fully connect with her eyes, and I just don't know. I was a front-row girl, of course, and as I left I said thanks for a great class, and she chirped, giantly and falsely, "OK! I hope you come back next week!" and it all felt very impersonal. But did I love the Italian Spitfire and Sexi Danci Nanci the first time I met them? I can't even remember now, it's been so long, but I suspect it took a few sessions for my ardor to bloom.

However, with Eddie Dance Party it was love at first sight. This I know for sure.

This week I've had a ton of work (yay!), so that's filled both days so far. I'd hoped to take a walk today and am even wearing my workout clothes, but between editing and the kids' early release from school and Husband's car in the shop again and him needing rides from me and cooking dinner— too much!

And I still, still!, have this stupid almost-cold dancing around me! Li'l Martini still has his almost-cold as well, though it seems like it might be turning into an actual cold. I don't want to be sick, but it might be a relief just to get it over with.

It just feels like there's a lot going on, but the biggest stress in my life at the moment is not cancer worries or money anxiety or even my poor yeasty cuticles — it's friend drama.

I alluded to a conflict I'm having with an old friend, and I guess I can come out and say it now: Bride Boy and I ended our 25-year friendship this week, and I am in grief. I went through denial and anger, then was prepared to bargain — and that, I think, was the stage at which I realized there was no bargain to be made, it was really over. So now I'm in depression . . . and my response has been to eat like I'm going to the chair, particularly since I can only drink four days a week while I'm on this medication. (Four more weeks! My cuticles had better be writing their thank-you notes now.)

Another friendship also ended this month; someone I've been close to in the Betsy-Tacy world got angry with me over a misunderstanding, then rebuffed both my loving let's-make-up overtures — and with that, I'm done. But I feel somewhat stunned, like, really? she can just drop me that easily? Doesn't she realize what a good and constant friend I've been to her??

Apparently not.

And then on Sunday, I had a horrible conversation with Good Neighbor Anne, one of my very dearest besties! (We're fine — this friendship is totes secure. But it was not a good day!)

So here's me questioning everything. Am I really the kind of friend I believe myself to be? What went so terribly wrong this summer? Could I (and should I) have done something differently, or was my friendship with Bride Boy simply not meant to be a lifelong one?

In church a couple of weeks ago we learned about Tashlich, a ritual traditionally performed on the first day of Rosh Hashanah, and I love rituals; I think I'm going to do it:
The word Tashlich means "You will cast away." It refers to a Jewish custom based on the last verses of the book of Micah: "And the Lord will cast into the depths of the sea all their sins." Tashlich is an invitation to consider what you need to change in yourself so as not to hurt others in the coming year. As a spiritual practice, you might write your answers to the following, roll the paper into a small ball, and symbolically cast it into a body of water:

• The name of a person who hurt me:
• The harm he or she did and the impact on my life:
• Aspects of this situation that are my responsibility:
• A learning from this experience that helps me avoid or minimize being harmed again:
• In order to free myself from this pain, I cast off or let go by:
I'll let you know how it goes.

In two days, Husband and I celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary! Which means that we are now 24 hours from my most favorite wedding memory: when the musicians called in sick the day before.

Good times.

Oh, and probably you figured this out from my mention of Depression Eating, but I have no weight-loss news to report — though, to be fair, I'm only up a couple of pounds. And this week at church, $u$an said I looked amazing, which was lovely to hear.  What with the burgeoning sinus cold and the biopsy and activities almost every night last week, it had been almost two weeks since I'd done zumba (though I walked a ton, including three full miles with Writer Jenny) and boy howdy did I feel wheezy and elderly last night. But now I'm back in the groove, with zumba on Monday and Wednesday — and I have Thursday and Friday night options if I want them. All will be well.

I'm going to close with a prayer for inner strength and peace:

Make me strong in spirit 
Courageous in action 
And gentle of heart.
Let me act in wisdom 
Conquer my fear and doubt 
Discover my own hidden gifts 
Meet others with compassion 
Be a source of healing energies 
And face each day with hope and joy.

—Lady C, ready to face the day with hope and joy

. . . and maybe one less pound. Then again, I had a cheese omelet and corn fritters for dinner. Also sangria.

And it was good.


  1. Our conversation was:
    Me: I know you are really angry with me.
    Lady C: Yes, I AM really angry with you but I still love you.

    I think it is feeling secure in that love that allows us to risk being who we really are in front of (and with) each other. Not easy when the commitments/yearnings I feel are in direct conflict with those you feel. But we try to accept. And forgive. I am grateful for your friendship!


    1. Absolutely, and so well said, my smart brilliant forever friend.


  2. I'm so sorry to hear about BB. My heart sank when I read his name.

    Hugs to you...and to him.


    1. Yep. It's heart-sinking news for sure. I'm still processing, of course, but my ultimate goal is to get to a place of being happy for "what was" rather than over-dwelling on "what is." Thank you for your kind note, September birthday girl!


  3. But I'm glad to hear about your healthy bubbies! J (again!)

    1. I just flashed you!


      (that's what this comment is rated)

  4. I love the prayer and the idea of tashlich (which I did not know about!) and I'm going to do it, too. I need it right now. I can sympathize with the pain of separating from long-time friends. As you know, I've been struggling with that in my own life. I am sending you loving thoughts for the best outcome, whatever it may be. And I am very relieved about the results of your biopsy! How lovely to have discovered woods you didn't even know about that are nice to walk in. --SDF

    1. Here's a proposition: What if we did the ritual together, in my local woods? (When they acted it out in church, they did it outdoors.) Just a thought, but I think it could be kind of awesome, and I would love to do this with you.


    2. Let's talk about it -- that sounds meaningful and powerful!

  5. I am happy for your boobs and for our friendship.
    Mrs. Cynicletary

    1. Thank you! You have been instrumental in helping me think through what adult friendship can and should be. I am so grateful for you!