Wednesday, February 2, 2011

No Pity Party for Us!

K came over to take care of Ryan one Friday
when I was feeling sick.  I wish I had pictures
of everyone else who came over to help too! 
Barry and I were talking last night about everyone’s reaction to me having breast cancer during the same time that my mom has colon cancer. Most people have sincerely offered compassion and to help us in “any way possible”. I think that sometimes we do need help, but it is hard for us to even think of what that help might be! Looking back, what I appreciated most is when people didn’t ask, but instead went ahead and found a way to help us. For example, telling me that they were coming over on a certain day to help take care of Ryan and visit with me, cooking food for us at a time when we were too stressed to think about it, and offering to travel all the way here from another state to spend time with me and cheer me up. All of these specific ways of helping have been sooooo greatly appreciated! Thank you all so much! I’ve found that these things have been so much more helpful than people just casually saying “let me know if I can help” and then doing nothing.  I have to admit that I have been guilty of saying that to people in the past, when I really didn’t know what else to say. But now that I’m actually IN a situation personally, I can see which types of “help” really do help! =)

Another thing that Barry and I talked about is how it makes us feel awkward when people say, “Oh my God, I feel soooo sorry for you guys” and act like it would just be so terrible to be us. First of all, we love being us and we are very happy with our life and our family! Please don’t feel sorry for us!  I appreciate everything more than I ever have, and Barry and I are only growing closer through these times. I have also become so much closer with my mom during the time that she has been sick, and now have a special connection with her that will always be a part of me. Happiness comes from within, and a person’s happiness depends on how they choose to look at the world. Why would I choose to be a miserable person when I can instead choose to focus on the good things and make myself happy each day? Yes, there are some really hard things to get through right now, but I know that they are temporary. When this is over, I will be a better, stronger person. Eight or nine months of being sick, uncomfortable, and not-so-great looking isn’t going to matter in the overall picture of my life. In fact, my future will be even more rewarding because I know how hard I fought for it, and I will be proud of myself for beating cancer. (Which WILL happen, because I refuse to think otherwise!) I have so much admiration for those cancer survivors that have gone before me, including my mom. It is amazing how much willpower and strength they have.

I remember this time last year (well actually every year for the past four years) my second graders wrote letters to Punxsutawney Phil, the famous groundhog who comes out of his burrow every February 2nd. Well, I’m happy to say that the groundhog did not see his shadow this year… which means that spring is coming early! yayyyyy! I sure hope it’s true.. I'm tired of the freezing cold and losing power for days at a time whenever it snows! COME ON SPRING!!!! 

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