Monday, December 14, 2015

Another Good Thing About Cancer

Women, traditionally, have body image issues.  I'm no different.  I've struggled over the years to like my body, to embrace it, just like most women.  I've felt out of place next to prettier women, and felt old next to younger ones.  I don't think that I'm any better or worse than them, but sometimes I have felt out of place over the years. We all do.  I've never obsessed over my weight to the point that I starved myself or developed an eating disorder, but I've despaired over swimsuit shopping just like the rest of my gender.

As all this cancer stuff has washed over me this past year, my view of my body has changed yet again.  Now, when I look into the mirror, there's a long scar across half of my chest. There's a scar from the drain, and the mediport. They've been there long enough that I don't really even register them.  They've become part of me.  They're my visible sign that I can deal with just about anything short of a zombie apocalypse and come out on the other side.  How cool is that?  Over the last year I've been more concerned about the roundness of my head with and without hair, for some reason, and whether I look more like a Conehead or Vincent D'Onofrio. 

Maybe it would be different if I were younger.  Perhaps I would feel horrible about how I look, and despair of ever looking like myself again.  But I'm not younger.  I've decided that I'm okay with looking like Vincent D'Onofrio, if that's what it takes.  Or a Conehead, for that matter.  I never looked like a Victoria's Secret model, and I don't expect to be wheeled out of surgery looking like one.  All this that I've been going through is about my health and not much else.

The real reason that I'm having reconstructive surgery is more about my clothes fitting than beauty.  I hate shopping for new clothes.  Well, also, I really dislike it when my fake boob doesn't stay where it is supposed to be.   But it's not because I have a need to look a certain way.  I'm over that now, and I feel pretty good about that.  I don't think about how I will look when all this is over, because instead of worrying about my outside, I know who I am on the inside. 

I'm a survivor. 



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