A year ago today, before posting my first post on this blog, I was filling out my profile page: world traveler... fashionably late... ooh, all those great concepts that defined me.
A year later and I haven't even been on an airplane in almost a year, let alone world-traveling. A year later, not only am I not fashionable (whatever that means, really), but let's just say I am no stranger to wearing the same pair of socks two days in a row, or to including pajama tops in my regular rotation of clothes and covering it up by throwing on expensive jackets I once bought for business/public speaking purposes only. I am not ashamed to tell you I have even used a table runner as a scarf for a whole week lately, without even washing it first. Truth be told, looking "normal" would actually make me feel completely out of place at this stage in my life.
So what changed in a year? Well, many things -- as you know, things do change. For example, a year ago my house had a terra-cotta/olive green interior and now it's all earth tones (well, we still have a terra-cotta room on the third floor so I guess some things don't change).
The dining room a year ago:
A year ago I took in a black cat I named Jamie and now we have a grey cat called Smokey.
Things change, you know, and whereas I realize no one has asked for my advice, let me tell you, changing things around you is way more fun than sitting still and watching the world change.
Obviously, what really changed everything for me, for us, as you probably guessed, is Geoff's cancer diagnosis. Cancer, especially in a later stage, is not exactly the news you're hoping for.
When I worked in danger zones in corners of this world that are very far from what you would consider safe, I learned that at the end of the day, even though you're never alone, you're alone. At some point, in a country I am not going to name here, I had 8 body guards on me day in and day out. Yet I always knew that if the worst came I was on my own. And as is Geoff. And as are you. One more reason to be your own best friend, your own priest, and be someone whose decisions you can trust. Be worthy of your own friendship. So I blog, I take a few minutes a couple of times a week, step back from my crazy life, and rearrange the slivers of the broken dreams in a way that makes sense to me. I really do not have the time to blog -- I steal the time. I come here to rearrange the slivers. I make time for many things I consider constructive. To talk with Geoff about silly things. To create a life for us that resembles cancer-free normalcy. To book things into the future so that there actually is a future. Have dreams.
The only way I know to fight cancer is by actively creating that part of life which isn't cancer.
When you write, you turn that misery into beauty. When you paint, you turn all that misery into beauty. When you dance, you turn all that misery into beauty. Own your own experiences, wear your scars and let them go get lost among sentences and brush strokes and dance moves instead of pondering over your own misfortune. Recycle your scars into beauty. Realize your own power.
Cancer has been part of our life almost as long as this blog has been up. It's part of our life still. It's part of our life but it's not our life.
I would like to thank everyone who reads this blog, through subscriptions or by visiting daily. I only know a very few of my readers in person (that I am aware of anyway), and having readers I have never met, who could be anyone from an eskimo to my next door neighbor, is rather thrilling in the most non-creepy of ways. Also thanks everyone who comments, whether you agree with me or not, I always love your comments. And those, who just come and read without commenting, thank you also (but if you can help it, please comment, bloggers love comments, you know).