As I've told many of you, I'm beyond ready. I was diagnosed June 6. I have known my surgery date since early July. I've had so much time to process and make decisions that I'm completely confident in what I'm doing and where I'm going from here. I'm chomping at the proverbial bit.
But as the date draws near and I check off other milestones (8th birthday celebrations, the start of school), my anxiety is amping up. As my "Mastectomy September '11" sisters on the Breastcancer.org board go for their surgeries, week by week, my blood pressure rises. Because even though I'm ready for my turn, I'm still worried, angry, anxious and sad. I do not want to have to do this. In my head, I'm stomping my feet like an angry toddler. Red in the face, crying, sweaty with conviction. If I humor myself, I can envision myself lying on the gurney, yelling all the way down the hall to the OR, "I don't wanna gooooooo!"
I'm consoling myself with the knowledge that there'll be a palpable sense of relief after my surgery is over. A big exhale. When I wake up after 6 hours of removing and replacing parts, I will finally have the golden opportunity to JUST. MOVE. FORWARD. instead of treading water in the "what might be." I've been treading water for 3 whole months. I'm pooped.
A friend described this time as "preparing for a long trip that you don't want to go on." She nailed it. I've been preparing for months for a forced march through cancerland. I hated it the first time around and the trip so far has sucked just as badly. But I'm also reminding myself that I'm lucky enough to get to come home after this trip. I know that each week after surgery, I'll get closer and closer to home: the place I find comfort, joy, hope and peace.
And I know that you can't come home if you don't go away. So away, I'll go.