Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Much Too Young to Feel This Damn Old

Very rarely have I ever seen one of my many scans to get an actual idea of where the cancer is invading. Once I got a view of my skeleton following a bone scan and saw a few lights on my side that turned out to be broken ribs (beware of coughing too hard if you have osteoporosis). But for the most part, doctors' reports with descriptions and dimensions is all I've had.

The one that's really stuck in my head, though, is the description of the mass in my upper lung "abutting my aorta." I knew there was one in my upper lung, but to hear it was right against my heart was freaky.  It does explain why I'm feeling short of breath and weak.  Of all places! Why couldn't I have a tumor on my big toe instead? It's like the enemy knew the most critical spot ..... and ..... bullseye!

Lately I have found I get winded just doing the smallest things. My heart pounds and I have to slow my steps, or just stay planted on the couch when I'd much rather be up and doing something. Leave the chores undone. Some days I can't manage anything more strenuous than tapping my laptop keys.  It's so frustrating! As the song goes, I'm much too young to feel so damn old!

I'll be turning 52 later this week. That used to sound awfully old to me, but not so much as I approach it. The woman inside my head feels the same as when she'd just graduated high school. Surely that wasn't very long ago, was it? Even at 52, my body should be much more able, if it wasn't for this cancer. Good grief -- I long for the health and stamina of my 95-year-old mother! She said to me the other day, "Oh that's right! You'll be turning 42 in a few days, won't you?" With an honest miscalculation she had shaved a full decade off my age.

For a split second I wished I WAS 42 again. Do you ever wish yourself back to a younger age? Not me.  Yes, it would be nice to have a thinner, wrinkle-free, stronger me and be able to enjoy the happy moments of my sons' childhood all over again. But then I remember the down side, the struggles, the unhappy moments, illnesses, etc.  No, I wouldn't wish to go through all those things in my past all over again. Life is a mix of the good and bad, and the good Lord brings us through it all for a reason. To form us and mold us into the people we are today.

So I'll celebrate my birthday and look ahead instead of behind. Here's to a new year and all the good things it will bring!

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