Sunday, February 15, 2015

My Patronus and medicine

I've been so impressed with the medical professionals I've come into contact with so far.  While I've sat petrified in chairs and on tables, being poked, prodded, and given bad news, they have all been informative, compassionate, gentle, amazingly skilled, positive, and in good humor.  And after hearing that my oncologist was a drum major for her band in high school, I now want to ask every last one of them, "Did you study music when you were in school?  Band?  Orchestra?"  Make a personal music advocacy study of the professionals of Lawrence Memorial...

I'm also thankful for the colleagues, and friends I've told about this turn of events in my life.  So many of them have sent along uplifting messages full of strength and faith.  I spent some time considering who I should tell.  I don't want to be presumptuous that my health is worthy of a mass email, so at this point I decided it was a need-to-know situation.  Its not that I don't want people to know, I just don't want to assume that the world revolves around my issues now.  So, at work, I limited it to my bosses, the elective team, and colleagues that I interact with daily - the ones where my string of absences will have a direct effect on their day.  And with friends, if the role were reversed, I would feel sick to my stomach if I didn't know that this thing was currently happening to them and that I couldn't start putting my thoughts and energy into hope and support.  It was hard (is still hard) to know where to draw the line of communication.

Well, anyway, its part of the reason why I decided to start this blog.  1.  Writing is personally a form of therapy for me.  Medicine.  2.  Anyone who wishes to keep up on this situation can tune in on their own and not be subjected to emails and messages that they aren't in a mindset receive.

I bought tickets to see the comedian Nick Offerman for Chris and the kids at Christmas, looking forward to an evening with family full of laughter.  Little did I know that February 12th would also be the day of my first appointment with an oncologist.  The great thing about Nick Offerman's wildly inappropriate humor is that it also contains a message, or series of messages.  #paddleyourowncanoe   It was one of those evenings that it was clear I was supposed to be there at that time.  It felt like Nick Offerman came to Lawrence, KS just for me.  One of the many nuggets of wisdom he spoke about was enjoying your life and embrace things that are meant to be medicine for your existence.  On the first mention of "medicine", Chris grabbed my hand, and that's when I felt the moment.

Chris has been super amazing.  SUPER AMAZING.  I bought him a superman shirt for Valentine's Day.  He has been my superman.  Hugging me, holding me, wiping tears, buying me special juices, making me a pink medical organization binder (complete with crayons and a coloring book for waiting rooms), spending hours on pinterest pinning about chemotherapy tips, and keeping me laughing.

Being a person that annoyingly searches for symbolism and purpose in everything that I do, I adopted an animal to be my mascot.  spirit animal.  patronus, if you will.  The elephant is a symbol of good luck, strength, serenity, and wisdom.  All things that I will need this year.  On the day of my biopsy, I saw an elephant bracelet, advertising good luck, so I bought it.  I haven't taken it off since.  So.  The elephant, it is.

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