Hey there Family,
I have been thinking about you lots as I know you have been me. I know that you have been getting kept well updated by my mom so here are some thoughts I haven't really shared yet.
I am sure we have all reviewed our year and cannot really understand or make sense of any of it. I guess maybe we needed more practice grieving. Something I have been thinking about is how the current situation with my health might overshadow the fact that I think we are all still grieving about the loss of Sue. Three things about that, 1. I hope that this doesn't cut short the full grieving process that we have only just really begun in relation to Sue and 2. That Jonah and Jake and their main supporters are still receiving any attention and support that they might be needing and 3. Jonah and Jake that you still know that we are all there for you and have energy to support you as you might need even though there is a fair amount of energy being distracted from that (I make an assumption here feel free to correct me if I am wrong).
In general I have been thinking and feeling that this whole thing has been much much harder for those who love me than for me. I have come to realize a number of things. I have been pretty much preparing for this all year and maybe for a few years. Not knowingly of course or I would have warned you all that there was another big one coming your way, but rather in my life choices. I purposely left myself open this year to experience life, to accept adventure as it came, to find out who I am and what I need to feel good and whole. Starting out my year with helping at a traumatic birth followed two days later by the loss of Sue helped me know that the freedom in my schedule was exactly as it needed to be. My heart was torn open and out came joy and gratitude (along with the suffering and sadness and grief). I spent time this year exploring things that I had decided were things that I couldn't do well for one reason or another like writing, singing, being an artist, playing the violin without self judgment, enjoying alone time, etc. Just before I got the diagnosis I was thinking about how happy I am that I made my year what it is and how much I have learned..... acceptance, mindfulness, self-love, a lightening of spirit, openness, listening to my heart more, etc.... I was noticing how loved and supported I feel in my community, how much love I have for our family, enjoying my garden and all that surrounds me.
At this point I feel prepared to receive this adventure too. For me right now I mostly am connected with the only path that seems available to me which is that of an exciting journey on the edge of life that brings about a feeling like when I bite into a homegrown asian pear.....sweet and super juicy, a little bit of sour overtones, sometimes some gristle but overall I am always amazed when I bite into them at how one fruit can hold so much sensation. Each bite is as exciting as the bite before (this is always how I feel not just now that I have cancer). This year was the first year that my asian pear tree bared fruit (they are not as good as the ones I am describing that come from a skyhouse tree but still pretty good). I am not delusional, I recognize that there is another possibility on this path and that is death. The thing is I realize that death if it comes is not so much about me as it is about you, the people who love me and who will feel the pain. I recognize that there could be some level of pain for me before death and yes that is scary but having never experienced death or severe physical pain I have nothing to go on it is a kind of empty thought process. It provides a lesson in recognizing how fear plays into pain. I am working on noticing when my pain is just fear and dealing with the fear so that the pain just becomes another sensation. At this point none of the pain has been that bad in itself, it is more the fear of "what if it doesn't subside ever before it gets worse." The point is thinking about death is just way less juicy than thinking about life and healing and the human body and the experiment which is me and my mind and my body. When I was a kid I had a conventional pediatrician who helped me heal a wart on my hand using only my mind. I thank him for this because at a young age I learned about the power of the mind and have been using it and honing it ever since. In the last few years it has become lazy and I am spending a lot of time these days relearning it, finding out what it looks like as an adult.
In general I do not see this as a battle or a fight, those words feel aggressive to me and do not help me feel loving towards my body...even towards the cancer which is actually made up of my body also. I am looking for words which connect to the seriousness of the situation without invoking aggression to describe this healing journey. So far that is the only request I have...please when you are talking about it try to stay away from words that invoke aggression. By all means if you are feeling aggression in relation to all this please let it out, go out and kick something or break something or whatever works for you, but when it comes to my journey please find loving and peaceful words......if you have ideas for words that capture the intensity and also the healing please share with me...
I am feeling so much love coming from yall. I have limited energy to keep in direct contact (you wouldn't believe how much email I am getting, three days to stardom....want my autograph) because I am in general prioritizing Sharon and my parents right now. It has been hard for all of us to not have seen each other yet. It probably good that they didn't see my in my full yellow glory because it was kind of scary. It will be better now that I have dropped my fake Mediterranean glow.... back to European skin tones. I imagine that once my immediate family is together it will free up some time for more personal contact.
Hey Jake. I am still holding on to your birthday present awaiting an address to send it to..... Whats your address.
I love you all