So many times I have been told (recently) how much more I will appreciate life now because of that thing I was diagnosed with last summer (I don’t like giving my power to that word) but let me tell you-I already appreciated life.
I already appreciated the little things.
I already woke up every single day grateful for another to be alive and for my family to be living.
I already knew the fragility of each moment and how life can change instantly.
I already treasured my family and these two precious boys and my husband that I love so much.
I didn’t need a scary thing to happen (again) to remind me.
I don’t remember much from before our time with Ruthie (I think grief has a way of taking your memory) but I’ll tell you every single day for the last 7 years I have lived my life gratefully.
So hopefully the universe gets the message that I don’t need any more “lessons”. I got it already!
I love my little family and am SO grateful for them...and am always aware that there is a little girl missing from our family picture who I miss more than words-even when I don’t say it aloud.
I can feel myself taking the small steps to regain independence and it feels so good. Exhausting, but good. I celebrate all the small victories and am grateful every day to wake up, live in this lifetime, and for the opportunity to heal. Even though my energy and stamina last only about one hour every day, those thoughts of gratitude are constantly on the forefront of my mind.
I am entering the next stage of healing which is active recovery. And let me tell you, I say ACTIVE because it is!! Every day I attend 1-2 appts to actively support the recovery from surgery, chemo and radiation. It’s so crazy to think that before my diagnosis I was a healthy person. No aches or pains, just a noticeable loss of energy. But now due to the treatment that saved my life, I am learning how to do things correctly that I never even had think about such as speaking, swallowing, turning my head, lifting my arm and resting. So this is a week in the life of recovery:
Monday: Acupuncture, Physical Therapy
Tuesday: Speech/Swallow Therapy, Chiropractor
Wednesday: IVC, Mineral and Nutrient Infusion
Friday: Pain Management/Active Release Therapy
In the midst of those appointments I do make time to rest. Those are doctors orders and they’re the experts! I limit visitors because my white blood count is still very low and to engage with others steals much needed energy from my family at this point. But I make sure to take a nap, do some writing, or watch a movie/show on TV. In fact, the majority of the day is still in bed.
Although my body is healing, my brain is pretty active! Thankfully my anxiety has subsided and my thoughts are more into creating again. It feels good to be “back in my body”, so to speak. Remaining patient for my body to catch up to my mind is a true practice of slowing down and remaining present, but if it means a full recovery (which I plan on having), I’m up for the challenge! And I have all the love, support, dinners, childcare, and donations of my friends and family to thank. They have provided me and my family the time and space to dedicate to healing and we are eternally grateful. I could not do an ounce of this without knowing I had a crowd of cheerleaders behind me. And, THAT's what life is about.
I had many firsts this week, including making my family dinner! I will start with that exciting news because food is my favorite, but there are many (more important) firsts to share! But each victory, large and small, are celebrated in my home and in my heart every single day. Beyond cooking dinner this week, I:
And THAT is the biggest one, being on my own with my youngest son. He was not even 2 when I got diagnosed and I feel such sadness in what I had to give up because there was no alternative. Breastfeeding stopped before either of us were ready, our nighttime routine was severely interrupted but mostly, it brings tears to my eyes that I couldn’t be alone with him for the last 5+ months because I couldn’t take care of or lift him. It breaks my heart, in fact. I do however, find comfort in the fact that he is so resilient and doesn't seem to be affected at all by the changes in our home. It brings tears of joy and gratitude that he is so loved at his daycare, that my amazing husband manages our family without complaint, and that my friends & family have helped with both our boys-many times while I was sitting in the same room.
It's amazing to think how in an instant life can change, yet I am no stranger to that reality. But this is life-and I am so grateful for LIFE💞 Here's to more FIRSTS!
I am mama of three beautiful babes; two sons whom I have the privilege of raising and my daughter who lived for 33 sacred days.