Last week, I had a real treat: for the first time in a long time, I went to the Art Institute of Chicago, famous for its impressionist paintings, among other artwork. On a pitch perfect day, I met a dear friend whom I hadn’t seen for awhile at the museum. We had lunch, laughed, caught … Continue reading the story "Fatigue"
Post Archives from the ‘Cancer’ Category
In my last post I discussed my possible lung damage from radiation therapy for breast cancer. I am still hoping for the courage to accept this possibility. Someday I will accept that I made the best medical decision I could have, given the misinformation I was given about radiation’s so-called “safety.” Today is not that day. Frankly, I’m having difficulty with acceptance. I am angry … Continue reading the story "“Safe,” My Ass"
When I finished radiation treatments for breast cancer 17 years ago, I received a beautiful certificate stating that I “graduated” from radiation and that I crossed that finish line. The staff signatures on my certificate and hugs from my radiation oncologist and nurses were amazing. I actually felt like a survivor and my spirits were buoyed … Continue reading the story "Radiation Blues"
In Judaism, there’s a beautiful gravesite tradition where the rabbi cuts a part of the mourners’ shirts, about where the heart is located. Those closest to the deceased wear the ripped shirt every day during the first week of mourning to symbolize and remind us and the community how our hearts are torn apart. The shirt … Continue reading the story "Dad"
This is my first post in awhile, for I was still grieving the loss of my beloved aunt, when my dad died of Parkinson’s in March. And I found myself sunk even deeper in the quicksand of depression. Writing is therapeutic, but I was so locked in grief that I couldn’t write. Grief and depression are a bitch. But now, finally and shakily, I write. Saying … Continue reading the story "My Father and the Holocaust"
After a harrowing few years filled with suffering from end-stage Parkinson's disease, his days are finally coming to an end. My dad has stopped eating, and now all my family can do is sit and wait. For a doctor’s phone call. Understandably, this is a difficult time for my family, made even more difficult by the people who are supposed to make things easier -- medical … Continue reading the story "My Father’s Dying; They Just Turn Their Backs"
Awhile ago, I wrote a post about those breast cancer support group members who were more of an albatross to me than a help. You can read about it here. Within the last year or so, two of the three offending, most insidious group members, D and S, contacted me. As I haven’t had … Continue reading the story "I’m Not Your Punching Bag"
For 2018, I’m continuing the tradition that fellow blogger Philippa Ramsden started: blogging about the three words that will guide me this year. (To check out Philippa’s three words for 2018, click here.) As my readers know, 2017 witnessed me getting laid off and losing my beloved aunt soon after. My precious aunt was … Continue reading the story "2018: My Three Words"
I don’t remember all my cancerversary dates. But I remember December 26 all too well. Like it was yesterday. It was the beginning of my cancer nightmare. Weeks before this date, I found a weird-but-subtle dimple on my right breast during my monthly breast self exam. My doctor said “It is probably nothing,” but he wrote a referral for a diagnostic mammogram “just to be on the … Continue reading the story "Twelve Twenty-Six"
These days, I’m feeling guilty. My father is faring badly hundreds of miles away. My mom’s anguish is palpable. I’ve been frantically advocating for him and trying to calm her down. All by phone. I have to be prepared to leave to Florida at a moment’s notice. But lately, and -- this is the crux of my guilt -- I’ve been having fun. I feel I’m a poor … Continue reading the story "Guilty Pleasures"