When I was told that recovery from implants was typically two years, I cried hysterically.
Fifteen months later I am still reminded that breast cancer is the one something in my life that was much bigger than me and my stubborn streak. Actually, breast cancer has repeatedly kicked my hind end for me. And because of that, I have learned a lot of hard lessons about how to set realistic goals. I have learned even more about patience and how to let go of what I can’t possibly do anything about.
I have learned even more about how much it means to me to simply be mobile.
That is exactly why I started going to zumba classes. Just as soon as my doctor OK’d it, I was on my way.
Last week at zumba a dear friend wrapped a big bandage around my chest before class. We thought it might enable me to move around more. The bandage idea was a fail, dang it. That is OK with me, though. The big picture is that I am physically driving myself to and from zumba. I am laughing and loving the music. I can do most of the steps.
Many times, I have been a big brat when forced to make concessions because of breast cancer.
But, like I said, I am doing much better with patience.
The most important part is that I am going to the class and enjoying it anyway, even when I have to sit down.
I am still discovering the ways my life is forever changed by everything pink. And I am still sifting through the parts of me that are still the same. One of those before-breast-cancer characteristics was that I dearly loved jumping right into the middle of anything even slightly adventurous and fun.
To smooth the wrinkles and breathe life back into that “old” part of me, I recently invited several other fun women to go horseback riding with me.
Before we headed out to get in touch with our inner cowgirls, one of my friends wrapped the big bandage around my chest, and I swallowed a pain pill. … If that’s how I have to roll in order to get back into life again, I am perfectly OK with that.
One friend asked to ride Jack, the calmest, most comatose horse in the pasture. And she kinda got exactly what she asked for. For 10 minutes her horse refused to leave the barn lot. He much preferred to nap.
My horse’s name was Elvis. He wasn’t nearly as lazy as Jack. But he either had a visual impairment or a problem with being passive aggressive. He barely made it around trees and sticker bushes, which meant that my left leg was constantly kissing the bark on trees.
I didn’t mind any of that. Not one bit.
After all of these sedentary months I was on a horse in the woods, sometimes thinking in the quiet and sometimes laughing at my goofy friends.
Next weekend we are going canoeing.
Without breast cancer, I still would have appreciated these experiences.
But after breast cancer, these moments put tears in my eyes. These days, I kiss and hug the people I love a lot more frequently. And I get extra excited when I have an opportunity to get out there and live my life again.