I’ll start with the update. The news is good, though complicated. All the tests indicated that the only cancer is that one nasty group of cells and nothing else, anywhere else. That is really, actually, all the news that matters. It means that we can go for a surgical cure (I love it when doctors use the word cure) and that I won’t need any subsequent chemotherapy. The difficulty comes, though, in the location of the tumor. It is situated in a very tight space, squished in between all the organs of my lower abdomen. Getting it removed, and ensuring that there are no other lingering cancer cells in the margins (part of the new cancer lingo I am picking up) will be tricky and complex. The surgery will take about five hours, and I’ll be in the hospital for about ten days after, and then at home for a while recovering. But that is fine with me. I can put up with anything knowing that in the end, I’ll be fine.
But I do want to write about the tendency which I, and probably many, have had in times like these to wonder why? And specifically why is my body doing this to me? For a very large portion of my life I felt as if I equalled my head. Sue Guiney was all the stuff crammed between my ears, and my body was just this thing I used to carry the real me around the planet. So when things went wrong with my body, it felt like this alien was doing something to me. That meant that in order to conquer what was going on, I would need to engage in a battle against my own body. Me against it. Over the years, I eventually came to understand how wrong an idea that was. But now more than ever I have fully taken on the truth that my body is me. My head is part of my body which is part of my thoughts and feelings, and all of it is part of something beyond the 5’1″ case which the world sees as Sue. Call it nature. Call it the animal kingdom. Whatever. The truth is I exist as part of something greater, and all sorts of troubles and joys, creations and destructions are happening all the time. My cancer is one part of it, and my cancer is , in fact, me.
This might sound a bit new-agey to some. But I have found it comforting. It has allowed me to walk away from the anger and fear. It has helped me accept what is happening, and by no longer resisting it, discover much more energy to overcome it.