Archive for December 11th, 2009

Scarred

Friday, December 11th, 2009

The scar that runs from just below my breasts, down my torso, and into my belly button is very itchy. I have lotioned it and rubbed it, and done all the normal things you are told with a scar of this size but tonight it is just making me insane.

There are times now, a year later, that I do forget about the scar and the hernias lurking underneath there. Then there are other times, like tonight, where the settling and skin pulling of it are just making me crazy and all I can think about it the scar, why I have it, and if it will ever settle anymore.

It is over 16 inches long, as I have an extremely long torso, and varies in width from very tiny to more than an inch across, in spots you can feel heavier built up scar tissue that rests over a spot where one of the internal stitches irritated my flesh more than in other areas. Right above my navel there is a heavy knot of scar tissue that hurts quite often. Tonight it is very painful, on top of the itchiness of the rest of the scar.

I grabbed the cocoa butter stick from my lotions and potions case, and gently rubbed some more of that into the scar, trying to soften some of the skin that pulls the worst. It smells incredible, like a luscious piece of chocolate. The skin is still pulling and itchy though.

Yet, I can’t be angry or very annoyed at it. This scar saved my life. The long scar is where they split me open*, removed the large tumor and kidney that encapsulated it. Even on the worst nights where the ventral hernias are really painful, I make myself remember why it is there. Then, and only then, I can deal with the pain for another day, knowing that eventually the hernias will be fixed, the scar will fade more, as will the trauma of all of this.

I rub a bit more cocoa butter into my scar, my left hand resting on it, as it does quite often, and thank the universe for sending me the doctors who saved my life. I smile over at my husband who stood by me through all of this, and it is all I can do to not wake up him with a kiss and a loud thank you, again.

Heart Grew Three Sizes That Day….

Friday, December 11th, 2009

I have always said that Halloween is my holiday. It is my holiday, I love the costumes, the jack-o-lanterns, the mystery, the veil being lowered between the living and the dead, if even it is only am imaginary lowering. In fact this year there were 13 carved pumpkins decorating my lawn flickering from the windiest Halloween night I can ever recall.

That night, as I sat here, in my vampire costume, talking with my husband, my good friends, with children giggling and eating too much candy in the next room, I declared “Halloween is mine, you all can have Christmas, this one is mine.”

Yet, I am finding myself more filled with Christmas spirit than ever. Holiday music is wafting from the speakers without my husband’s prodding. All my shopping was done early, and with a smile on my face instead of with dread. I have even wrapped quite a few presents already. All of the holiday movies we own, plus ones we have DVR’d have been in heavy rotation for me.

But, it wasn’t until tonight when we were hanging ornaments, and watching “A Charlie Brown Christmas” and then “Prep & Landing” that I realized what was going on. Me, the self proclaimed Halloween Queen was loving every minute of the Christmas season. The candles, the lights, the sappy movies on TV, the smiles on children’s faces as they count down the days, the smell of pine and gingerbread.

My goodness I am filled with holiday cheer. I can’t wait to take my nephews to the Lodge Christmas party this weekend. The baking that is planned for later this weekend and next week is making me smile instead of dread it all.

It wasn’t until tonight, when Tony and I were sitting in the living room, with the only light in the room being the twinkle for the tree, that it hit me why the Christmas spirit is so much a part of me this year.

Last year at this time I was just a few days home from my Nephrectomy. The pain was still horrid and the large doses of Dilaudid barely put a dent in it. We were awaiting the numbers telling us what my prognosis would be, and also in the countdown to my first post nephrectomy scan already. Cancer was such a large thought in my mind, and the terror that it might be my last Christmas that there was no joy at all.

This year, I am joyful to not only be here, and healthy, for another Christmas but, having cancer seems to have changed me. The delight of the wrappings of the holiday has been reborn in me. Until tonight I had thought of my bout with cancer as having nothing good come of it but, maybe just maybe it did bring back some of the childhood wonder that life tends to beat out of us over time.

Heart Grew Three Sizes That Day….

Friday, December 11th, 2009

I have always said that Halloween is my holiday. It is my holiday, I love the costumes, the jack-o-lanterns, the mystery, the veil being lowered between the living and the dead, if even it is only am imaginary lowering. In fact this year there were 13 carved pumpkins decorating my lawn flickering from the windiest Halloween night I can ever recall.

That night, as I sat here, in my vampire costume, talking with my husband, my good friends, with children giggling and eating too much candy in the next room, I declared “Halloween is mine, you all can have Christmas, this one is mine.”

Yet, I am finding myself more filled with Christmas spirit than ever. Holiday music is wafting from the speakers without my husband’s prodding. All my shopping was done early, and with a smile on my face instead of with dread. I have even wrapped quite a few presents already. All of the holiday movies we own, plus ones we have DVR’d have been in heavy rotation for me.

But, it wasn’t until tonight when we were hanging ornaments, and watching “A Charlie Brown Christmas” and then “Prep & Landing” that I realized what was going on. Me, the self proclaimed Halloween Queen was loving every minute of the Christmas season. The candles, the lights, the sappy movies on TV, the smiles on children’s faces as they count down the days, the smell of pine and gingerbread.

My goodness I am filled with holiday cheer. I can’t wait to take my nephews to the Lodge Christmas party this weekend. The baking that is planned for later this weekend and next week is making me smile instead of dread it all.

It wasn’t until tonight, when Tony and I were sitting in the living room, with the only light in the room being the twinkle for the tree, that it hit me why the Christmas spirit is so much a part of me this year.

Last year at this time I was just a few days home from my Nephrectomy. The pain was still horrid and the large doses of Dilaudid barely put a dent in it. We were awaiting the numbers telling us what my prognosis would be, and also in the countdown to my first post nephrectomy scan already. Cancer was such a large thought in my mind, and the terror that it might be my last Christmas that there was no joy at all.

This year, I am joyful to not only be here, and healthy, for another Christmas but, having cancer seems to have changed me. The delight of the wrappings of the holiday has been reborn in me. Until tonight I had thought of my bout with cancer as having nothing good come of it but, maybe just maybe it did bring back some of the childhood wonder that life tends to beat out of us over time.