Chemo resumes today. If you are inspired to send any prayers or positive thoughts, please do. No pressure, but they make a world of difference and I am deeply grateful.
It was wonderful to be off chemo last week. Tiron and I got to travel to Arizona with the boys. Not only did we enjoy our escape from the blizzards in Boston and our stay at a resort in warm weather, we attended a wonderful and generous three-day series of parties hosted by friends to celebrate their birthdays and filled with the love of so many family and friends.
Occasionally during the festivities, I wondered whether I could ever believe that I would be well. I know that this belief is important, but I don’t know how to “make” myself feel that belief in a genuine way. I prayed for some way, some insight, something.
On our final morning at the resort restaurant, I bumped into Eric. Eric and I met this weekend for the first time. We barely spoke because there were just so many old friends to catch up with and new friends to get to know, but Eric clearly exuded positive energy and optimism and seemed to be easy to talk with and comfortable to be around.
That last morning, standing at the breakfast buffet, we shared small talk, then he told me that his best friend was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. I started to feel my internal defenses rise against another story of loss but something made me trust him so I listened as he continued.
Eric received the news on his voicemail. Before he could return the call, he sat on a bus next to a lady who, unprompted, told him how she was once diagnosed with a specific type of pancreatic cancer (which he relayed but I don’t recall) and recovered.
At this point, he knew that his friend would be well, and, soon after that, he was able to call his friend and speak to him speak from a different place, from hope and optimism and an inner knowing that things could and would get better.
They later learned that his friend indeed had the same cancer as that woman, and though the road wasn’t easy, he recovered and is healthy and cancer-free today.
Eric talked a bit longer with me about my diagnosis. He shared his contagious optimism about my improving health, admitting that it doesn’t mean that the path ahead will be straightforward or easy, but again saying I am moving toward health and I can heal from this. He used the word “believe.”
I felt like Eric was my lady on the bus. Something inside of me shifted to believe that good health is not only possible, but possible for me.
Thank you for sharing your positive energy, your connections, your friendship and the friendships of others. Thank you for your prayers on my behalf, and for keeping me company on this amazing and sometimes crazy ride.