Thursday, November 05, 2015

My Favorite Word

Today, I got to hear my favorite word. There is (thankfully) rarely an occasion to use it, so I don't hear it much, but when I do, it is sweet, sweet music to my ears.

The word isn't love.
It isn't money.
It isn't chocolate.
It isn't cake.
It isn't surprise.
It isn't winner.
It isn't clothes. Or cars.

It isn't anything you can give me. Or buy me.

The word I heard today was simply "benign."

I also heard non-malignant, which is practically the same thing, but I think benign is more fun to say. Also it makes me think of Bingo. B9.


I got to hear that word today.

Which was a relief. Because for the last few weeks, I had walked around in a panic; thinking, worrying, fretting, terrified that I would instead hear Sorry to have to tell you, but you have cancer. Again.

All over a freaking enlarged lymph node by my clavicle. My left supraclavicular lymph node if you want to be exact. It was enlarged. For no reason we could discern. I found it accidentally about a month ago. Then the doctor felt it. Then they ultrasounded it. Then they biopsied it. Apparently, we don't mess around with supraclavicular lymph nodes.

All I could think was here we go again.

Again. This is the fourth time I have been biopsied. Going into this biopsy, I was 1 for 3 with cancer. I didn't know if I'd come out the other side 2 for 4 or 1 for 4.

And I'm just so over all of this.

But it's not all over me.

I spent the last few weeks imagining that everything will come back fine. I imagined that cancer had returned. I hoped that it hadn't. I pictured telling my kids that it has. I pictured laughing with my husband about how nervous I was and how all that worry was for naught. I wondered what words I would use to tell my mom that I have cancer again. My dad. My sisters. My family. My friends. I wondered if even if the results were good, if I'd still have a worry, an ever-present fear, at the back of my brain. Wondering if cancer was back.

The weight is ever present. It is so heavy on me.

I wonder will it always feel this heavy. Will the worry always be this deep. Will the fear always permeate everything I do. It must get better.

When we checked my thyroid, I called support people crying before the biopsy. I was so scared. This time, I haven't said a word to hardly anyone really.

So it must be better? It must not be so scary or painful. It must be getting better.

Time eases all we're told. Albeit slowly, at a snail's pace. So slowly that if you were a bystander you might not notice the changes at all. But over time, a subtle difference would start to emerge. And if you pulled out a photo from 20 years ago and held it up, you might think well look at that! I can see a difference.

And that is what I'm holding onto tonight. No matter what happens, it will be okay. It's got to be okay. Even if it's not. It's got to be.

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