Pretending to be Normal

red ink . . .

So my girl is out of surgery…again. That little body of hers has taken a lickin’ and just like the energizer bunny – she keeps on tickin’! I heard from her friend Tracey (her cancer mentor) who Barb told me via text this morning, beat her to the hospital. Tracey called me from the hospital once again post-op (thank you Tracey), and snuck to let me hear Barb’s voice once again. Sounding tired and drugged, I could just barely hear her in there, but I was comforted to know that she wasn’t by herself. (Tracey and I have never met in person, but through Barb, we’ve become family!)

So, I’ll pause to give the “medical minute” in the words of pink ink.

She had surgery this morning to remove the expanders which have prevented her from having an MRI. An MRI is necessary to determine whether or not the spots that they think they see on her lungs and/or the headaches that she’s been suffering for months indicate that the cancer has spread. (I had to pause to write that.)

In any case, the surgery today was supposed to be “uneventful” and so far so good. She had worries about her skin and about her breathing and lungs after surgery, but according to Tracey, she made it out o.k. and might be going home to finish healing (albeit is a lot of pain) as soon as tomorrow. It will take several weeks for her incisions to heal such that she will be able to have the MRI, so it’s still a waiting game. But the short of it is, that she made it through the surgery and is one step closer to the finish line.

So I went to bed last night with her on my heart and woke up thinking of her this morning. As soon as my kids were out of the car, I sent her a text to let her know that I was there in spirit. I went about my day “pretending to be normal” (that’s actually the title of a book written by a woman with Asperger’s – another story), but that’s how it felt. It struck me that we now have had a lot of practice at this “pretending” when this year hasn’t been at all, in any way, shape or form, normal.

Last night on the phone our usual banter about Jack & Jill activities and getting through our to-do lists was interspersed with sobering talks about the prognosis for this type of cancer and about how I want her to be there for my 50th birthday next year. The laughs and the sharing still come easy with every conversation but the tears are more and more often just behind my eyes. I refuse to break down while talking to her because it won’t help her or me, and Lord knows she doesn’t need to carry any more than she has in her bucket. So we both go on supporting each other in the every day ways that we always have – pretending to be normal.

This past year, though, has been anything but normal . . .

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. helen imes
    Sep 11, 2012 @ 14:29:00

    Oh what a blessed day, today the surgery is over and the healing process begins.. My little baby niece is so surrounded by angels like Tracey and redink(don’t know a name) and her loving family including her Mom to help with Blayre. My prayers continue and my worry ceases when I turn it over to God. I can hardly wait for her to be able to say “Hi” to me. Thank you for your posts and blogs that keep me informed while being so far away from her. Love, MONA


  2. Jennifer
    Sep 11, 2012 @ 16:46:30

    Thank you for the update. We often have to pretend to keep moving forward. I am sure that it is difficult for you to be so far from your friend in this difficult time, but I am sure you are a great comfort to her and the family.


  3. Dee
    Sep 12, 2012 @ 02:00:20

    Thanks for the update! We continue to pray for Barb and her fight! Love you both! Your blogs helped me face and endure my daughters bout with breast cancer. Dee C.


  4. Regina Spellers SIms
    Sep 18, 2012 @ 05:01:35

    Hi Red ink…thanks for your post. You are simply fab! Fifty next year? Never would have guessed it. Smooches – Gina


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