It's hard to believe another year has passed. Another year of holidays spent with family, late night laughs with girlfriends, and curling up in bed with Mike and the pup. Another year of blessings. Another year filled with so much gratitude. Truly - I am grateful.
But, as much as I want to feel excited for my birthday (which is tomorrow), and relieved to reach another cancerversary (on the 23rd), I am just struck with deep sadness right now. This has been a brutal few days for what we refer to as our group of "Mets Babes". My incredibly strong, brave and supportive friends that live with metastatic breast cancer just like I do. I met a great group of them on a forum through Kris Carr's online community. Coming into contact with these women online was the first time since my diagnosis that I felt like someone else truly "got it". I had finally found other women that knew what life with stage IV breast cancer was like. Sure they knew all about the physical effects, but more so, they knew about the emotional and psychological damage this disease can take on your spirit and heart.
One of the first women that reached out to me was Jeanne'. She quickly became a shining light for me - a beacon of hope - a trusted friend - and an invaluable source of support and strength. She would check on me all the time and write me messages to keep my spirits up and remind me how strong I was. She let me confide in her all of my deepest feelings about my wish to become a mother and she shared in my sorrow since she herself had been trying to adopt when she was diagnosed. Although I never met her in person, Jeanne' had become a fast friend and one I cherished very much.
I found out early Tuesday morning that Jeanne' had taken a sudden turn for the worse and is now facing her final days on this Earth. Her body is shutting down and failing her. I have been heartbroken ever since I heard the news. On top of that, two of my other dear friends have had progressions this week after being in remission for quite awhile. It has been a bad week for us, Mets Babes. I am not only devastated for Jeanne' and her family, but also sad for my friends that face a recurrence of their disease. And on top of all of that, I am terrified for myself. I am so scared because this all hits so close to home. How is it possible that my friend that appeared so vibrant and alive just a couple weeks ago, is now facing the end of her life? It terrifies me at how fast this can happen - how fast our lives can change. Am I looking into a crystal ball at what is going to happen to me? The reality is that I am one appointment away from not being "fine". From bad news- from new treatments - from more chemo - from crappy side effects - from a decreased quality of life.
I don't live in fear - I really don't. But how can I not be completely rattled when this is happening to my friends? How can I not be angry, frustrated, heartbroken and devastated by this? It is not normal to be 30 years old and have so many friends die.
So as I approach my birthday and the second anniversary of my diagnosis, I will try my best to remain hopeful, optimistic and grateful. But, I will have a heavy heart for dear Jeanne' and for all of my other mets babes that continue to travel this road along with me.
"Aging is a privilege denied to many." I am truly grateful for another year - and I so desperately want many, many more!
ps - Even as I type this I feel guilty about not being super upbeat and positive. But, I hope you - my friends and family, and even those that I haven't met but know me through my words - can understand that I need this blog to be a place where I can be true to me. A place where I can be true to my authentic thoughts and feelings - whether good or bad. I am grateful for this life and it is a beautiful one. But, it is a very difficult life too. And I need to give myself permission to share that here - in my little piece of cyberspace. Thank you for all of the love and understanding.
Been so busy lately that I haven't picked up my camera as much as I would like. So here is my life in Instagram pics :)
My blog to keep you all