So I haven't written in a while... like 3 months a while...and honestly, it's been for no other reason than I haven't been able to put my thoughts together in my own head let alone try to share them with other people without feeling completely crazy (and believe me... putting it down "on paper" like this would definitely make me feel crazy considering it's more permanent than say, just talking to someone, and I have felt pretty crazy in attempting to do that). I would love to say that I have a better handle on things now. In fact, looking back to the beginning of this year I truly thought by now it would all be worked out... but it's not and I don't. However I miss writing.. I miss the outlet of sharing my thoughts...so I'm gonna try and put it out there once again.
Back in November of last year I got sick and in the midst of getting treated for a not so fun case of diarrhea (TMI I know), I found out I had a tumor. When I came home from the missions field in December I got checked out again by an American doctor (with fancier American equipment) and she confirmed that yes in fact I did have a tumor and then she gave me all these scary statistics and sent me off to a specialist. The specialist sent me for more test and then came up with a treatment plan that involved shots, hormone replacements and eventually a major surgery. Two weeks ago I finally got my 22cm (the size of a fetus that's 5 months) removed. CRAZY!
I honestly can't tell you much about the surgery, I really don't remember that much from my stay in the hospital... other than what I've been told after the fact and that I had a blood transfusion... and I won't get my pathology report for a few more days (although no news is apparently good news so the fact that they didn't contact me immediately after surgery tells me that any chance of cancer has been cancelled out..hurray!). But I can say that recovery has certainly be interesting.
I don't think I ever realized just how much energy it takes to do pretty much anything. My first week of recovery, going to the bathroom or even just walking from the kitchen to the adjacent room would tire me out for the day. Thankfully I had a laparoscopic procedure so my incisions aren't so bad (although there are 2 more than usual for this kind of surgery) but man my body has been quite bruised up and I've really had to learn I cannot push myself beyond just simple things (at least for the moment).
I've also learned some life lessons through this recovery process as well. Like for one, what a real friend is like. Before surgery, I didn't tell a lot of people about it. I didn't want it to be made into a thing and I didn't want to get pity looks (plus the placement of my tumor is a little personal). Once surgery happened and I realized I might need more help than I thought, I started reaching back out to those people who did know about it. What touched me the most though, was when those people just did things for me without asking.... actually it's more than that, it's not what they "did" but how they just when made time for me...how they were just "there".
In the past, when my friends have been sick or going through things, I've fallen victim to the need to "do" for them. Obviously I care about them and thus I wanted to do something to show it. Now I realize that my "doing" was really more for me than for them. From my experience of the past few weeks I can honestly say ( at least for myself) what people want in their time of need is your PRESENCE more than your PRESENTS... I've always heard that... now I get it.
So to all those people in the past who I've gone and "done" for, never asking what you really wanted and just assuming my "doing" was good enough because it made me feel better... I apologize. And to all those people who took the time over the past few weeks to come and "be" with me, I thank you! I know it's not easy to sit with someone when you don't have the answers or you don't know what to say and you can't just fix things....but honestly, I didn't/don't need you to fix anything.... just standing (or in my case sitting) thru this recovery with me... just "being" there physically and checking in and making me feel like I matter... it's means the world to me! So thank you and I hope I will be just as good of a friend to you in the future.
What I've also learned... although this is more of a continuation lesson (something I've been learning for a while now)... is that I need to learn to just accept people for who they are and not who I wish they would be. We are all human, we are all just trying our best. Sometimes our best doesn't add up to what someone else wants from us, but that doesn't mean we aren't trying to love and be there. In the past few months and especially the past few weeks I've had to start accepting that people's "best" is "good enough" (something that's hard for me to accept considering I constantly beat myself up for not doing or being "good enough"). I can say that trying to accept this has made life a little more enjoyable...or it's at least set me up for less heartache. It's also made me evaluate what I can and can't handle and thus what I can draw closer to and what I need to pull away from.
I definitely have a lot more to learn on this topic...on many topics in fact. I have so much more growing up to do than I can even begin to explain. However, for the first time in a long time I feel okay to admit that because I know I am working on it. It may not be pretty at the moment but it will get better (it's kinds like cleaning your room... things always get messier before they get better). I feel like I am getting back on track though...at least having surgery behind me sure makes me feel like it. So stay tuned to see where things go from here...