A question I get asked regularly these days is “how are you?”. It usually comes with a dramatic pause while the person looks me straight in the eye with a sympathetic head tilt. I generally say “as good as I could be” or “today’s not a great day.” Both true when I say them, but still a simple explanation of something so complex.
In a single moment I feel…
- Relieved we caught it early.
- Devastated that my child is being pumped with toxic chemicals.
- Proud that we seem to be handling this okay.
- Scared about how he will react to the chemo.
- Joyful when I see my boy’s smile.
- Nervous about providing him with direct medical care in his home (there is a reason I am not a nurse!).
- Thankful that we have so help during this time.
- Frustrated about people expressing pity for me.
- Grateful for true friends and supportive words.
- Fearful that I we are fighting for my child’s life.
- Happy that I have my husband with me through this.
With every good emotion there is a bad one backing it up. With every happy moment is done with a knot in the pit of my stomach.
But here is the thing, once you let your mind go completely to the dark, bad, sad place, it’s incredibly hard not to stay there. I refuse to think about the absolute worst-case scenario, but I also refuse to pretend this is like a cold or some other every-day problem. I am fighting hard to stay on the side of positive but am still “feeling” my emotions. I let myself cry, then it’s time to move on.
Some days it’s easy. Some days I fail (and eat a lot of chocolate). But I am still trying, that’s the least I can do.