Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Cancer In A Jar
That January day was preceded by a year of trying to get a surgical referral, of learning at high speed through a traumatic situation how to get what I needed. How to hurdle the gatekeepers, trample the stoppers. That was the year of Flat Alice: anyone who tried to get in my way. The year of Beckie being at my side for each encounter, of her agreement to hold my consciousness until I was ready to take it back, of her getting me to a chair before I passed out when I saw the room of face parts in the MP's office as I hung up my coat. Of sitting in her car in the freezing cold after the MP told me he could replace my eye, but he couldn't make it blink, and Beckie slamming both hands onto the steering wheel, shouting "Damn it! Why can't he make it blink?" Of her being my ears, my guide, as well as continuing to be my Best Friend in the Whole Wide World.
Of children who became my spiritual advisors. Of my mother, unaware she was going to die of cancer soon, trying to find a way to bond with me that did not include disease.
A year of fools and misogynists and incompetent famous doctors and ridiculous healthcare network rules and paperwork. A year of miracle workers, angels on earth, and family, friends, laughter and terrible pain.
There would be another six years of surgeries to repair and replace. Six years of deepening and new friendship and acute self-discovery. Six years descending into personal financial crisis, and ascending to gratitude and awareness. Six years of losing my mother and friends to that awful disease.
Through it all there would always be that day in January when Dr. John Jacobs said it's in a jar.