Tears of joy.
Sobbing, heaving, tears of relief.
An incredible sense of excitement.
Of being a just a normal mother again, of soccer games and birthday parties and proms and weddings. Of little everyday joys and pains-in-the-asses and everything else that makes up a rich life.
And no chemo. And no radiation and no horrible hormone therapy. Less screening. An amazingly low risk of recurrence.
I knew that the chances of there being a big surprise on the pathology were "remote" - my beloved Dr. Y, the oncologist, used that word. But you know what? The chances of my getting breast cancer at 32 were less than remote. And that happened. So I don't trust stats all that much, really. And I have seen too many women get the rug pulled out from under them, just when they thought they were doing great.
I've watched a few women die. Young women. Women I loved.
Not because they did anything wrong, were reckless, were careless, but just because they drew the short straw in the cancer game. So there but for the grace of God goes any one of us. I knew it could be me, but this time, thank goodness, it's not. I, once again, got lucky.
If I could wave my hands in the air, I would . . . but then my implants would migrate up to my chin. Instead, my heart's doing happy flip-flops and I am on the brink of tears as I listen to the delicious sounds of my beloved daughter reading aloud to me for her homework . . . just an ordinary afternoon, on one of the more extraordinary days of my life.
Take that, f-ing cancer. I hate you. I beat you twice. You better just quit messin' with me.