|birthday 2010 - sleeping the flu off on my left side|
I know, I know. I'm lucky to be here, and doesn't that put things in perspective, yadda yadda. Yes and no. I am lucky to be here, but every day doesn't feel like a gift. A few days ago, it felt like the fog was lifting (sunshine helps) and I had a great day. The day was happy, from start to finish.
But sometimes it's hard to distract myself from the fact that my life is different now. My body is different. The hopes and dreams I had for myself and my family are up in the air. The visions of the future are all question marks and cloudy bubbles.
Of course I know now that in reality, the future is that way for everyone, and was that way for me before, I just didn't know it. There's still so much grief and anger in what is not. And what I fear may never be. New normal frickin sucks.
It's difficult not to compare myself to all of the happy, functioning, thin, rich, well rested, fertile, professionally satisfied, healthy people out there. Yes, mostly people put out there what they want you to see (extra specially on Facebook), but leaving out the bad parts isn't quite lying. And I do wonder how people who are just meeting me now, no concept of the past few years, see me.
I used to love my birthday with a passion, reminding everyone within a 30 mile radius of the countdown as soon as MLK day had passed. The day has very rarely lived up to my expectations of what a birthday should be (the most incredible day all about you so special favorite things love balloons ribbons rainbows everywhere) and a few years ago (probably when I discovered that birthdays are supposed to be for the moms) I docked it down to just hoping for a good dinner out and a candle stuck into something yummy.
This year feels like poo for a couple of reasons. Last year I was fresh off of a clean scan and basking in the no-cancer glow. This year I am turning the same age as a friend was when I met her and started babysitting for her awesome kid(s), who just had his bar mitzvah last year. So, a) that means I'm old and b) my life looks so different from where hers was at this age. Silly, perhaps, but that was the image in my mind's eye of what it looked like to be this old.
Tomorrow I will celebrate the blessing of being alive for another year. I will eat roti canai. For dessert, there will be husband-made heavenly lemon meringue, with a candle.