This post is an update to my announcement I Have Cancer – And It’s Okay, as well as a follow up to My Body Is Changing and I Don’t Know How To Feel About It. If you haven’t read either of those posts, I recommend starting there. Also, please read with caution if you are easily triggered by the topics of abuse or Alzheimer’s.
Dark & twisty. I’ve always related to that description so much, in part because I relate to Meredith Grey (the main character on Grey’s Anatomy, for the uninitiated), but also because it feels incredibly accurate. The GA storyline chronicling her mother’s battle with Alzheimer’s simultaneously destroyed me and put me back together while I lived in the shadows of my own family’s battle with the disease. The more life throws at me and the older I get, the more dark & twisty I feel.
Tucked deep within my darkest and most twisty of layers are life experiences I’ve subconsciously chosen not to remember in detail, along with the emotionally abusive skepticism that followed and years of physical dysfunction that turned into cancer all occurring in the same physical area. I can’t shake the feeling that everything truly damaging that has ever happened to me is because I was born a woman. As I typed that sentence the emotions felt extreme and unshakably true.
Even at a very young age, my intuition was crystal clear. I’ve always said I didn’t want kids with perfect clarity that was never convincing enough for acquaintances extolling the virtues of “finding the right person”. Perhaps it was a deep-rooted knowledge that my reproductive system would try to take me down from the inside or maybe it was self-preservation to protect me from the men believing that my mere existence was in service to their urges.
So here I am, a culmination of experiences and choices, holding my reproductive system accountable for acts so dark they are rarely spoken of in detail. It was my choice to gloss over the physical symptoms of my PCOS for more than 10 years and to dismiss them under the guise of fear and phobia, the consequences of which slowly evolved into cancer.
I have the opportunity to simultaneously rid my life of much of my physical dysfunction and, optimistically, all of the cancer. I’m running towards surgery faster than I’ve ran towards anything in my entire life. I wish I could ceremoniously light my reproductive system on fire like mementos of old boyfriends, but writing about it will have to suffice.
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