I had a couple ideas of things I wanted to write about while they were still on my mind, but something else just came up and I thought I'd write about that instead.
My friend Maria, one of my oldest and dearest friends, just posted on Facebook a few minutes ago that today marks the one year anniversary of her being cancer free. I feel so happy for her right now. It's terrible that she got the cancer in the first place, but it's so fucking great that she beat it.
Not that there's ever a good time to be diagnosed with cancer, to me, Maria's diagnosis and battle couldn't have come at a worse time. Her ordeal was at the same time as my Mom's battle with cancer. I was so focused on Mom during that period in time that I was unaware of what Maria was going through. It's understandable. It wasn't until a few days after Mom's funeral that I found out about Maria. I was talking to her and she mentioned that she tried to come to Mom's service. She had, in fact, driven to the funeral home, but she couldn't bring herself to come in with everything she was going through. Absolutely understandable. If I was in her place, I don't even think I would have left the house that day.
And this brings up something that I've been feeling lately. I've just about shaken off all the blahs and blues I've been feeling in regards to the first anniversary of Mom being gone. It really affected me more than I thought possible. It brought up all sorts of unresolved feelings and emotions and it really caught me off guard. The whole month of September I was a miserable bitch. I'm starting to feel more myself again, but also very different. Last year after we lost Mom, and when I was starting to come out of the fog I'd been in, I realized that the whole ordeal changed me. I came out of it feeling a lot stronger. For the first time in my life, I realized that I actually like myself. I don't know if it was because I wasn't quite the same as before, or that I was just seeing myself in a new light, but dammit, I really think I'm not that bad a guy. The whole time Mom was sick, I pretty much cut everyone out of my life. When I hurt, I want to be left alone. I process stuff better that way. As I was feeling better, I really didn't go back to the way things were. I really didn't take (m)any steps to reestablish contact with people the way I was in touch before. To be honest, I just didn't care. As the anniversary of Mom's death approached, I found myself doing the exact same thing. I backed away (though not nearly as far as last year) to heal myself. And this may have been the final step in process to becoming the new me. For the first time in my life, I feel like I'm living my life unapologetically. I've always lived my life trying to please others first. I've always done things because others really wanted to do them or really thought I should do them. I no longer have the time nor the need to live my life that way. And I don't really give a fuck what anyone thinks about it. It's a whole new and improved me.
If anyone told me a year ago something good would have come out of Mom's illness, I would have punched them in the throat. Shows what I know. :-)