What Lies Beneath

I’m more than a little irritated, as I’d written an entire post, did something odd, and it hadn’t auto-saved the draft. Of course, I’m sure I was much more eloquent the first time. Sorry to short change you. 🙂

The one thing I can give you, buzzed post. Not as much as either the day my hair fell out, or the big 40… but my glass of wine is not empty yet.

So, back to the point. Monday I had my second, and likely last, tattoo session. No, it wasn’t touching up something fun, or a memorial of my fight.

I was getting more pigment added to my nipples.

Even to people I’ve explained this to before, this sounds horrible & painful. I assure you, it is not. Not only are we talking about tattooing normal skin, but since when they do a mastectomy, they cut most of the  nerves to the skin, I have less sensation in my “boobs” than almost anywhere else in my body.  It’s still a strange sensation, as the muscles that are between the deadened skin & the non-organic implants still have feeling, but even without the numbing cream that they give me, I don’t feel much of anything. I’d say the feeling is kind of surreal, but after two years it’s become pretty familiar.

That’s right, two years today, I lost 8.5 lbs in 12 hours. If I could figure out how to do that again with out the whole surgery & cancer thing, I could make a LOT of money.

Anywhodle- the stone cold sober post I wrote the other day had nothing to do with the two year anniversary of my bilateral mastectomy. Which is probably the day I should recognize as my cancerversary, but the sidekick doesn’t want to celebrate.

My post that I wrote the other day was about Robin Williams. And my former colleague who killed himself after a long battle with depression a couple months before the whole cancer thing rocked my world.  Both amazing people. Both would do so much for a friend, and even though they were both public about their fight, no one would have known.

Mental illness is one of those dirty secrets that no one talks about.  Like cancer used to be. Like domestic violence. Child abuse. Racism. Hate.

SO MANY THINGS that we just don’t talk about.

One of the things that really pissed me off this week was that anyone said ANY mean things to Williams’ family in social media.  WTF? I mean really?

And then I wonder, what horrible experience must they have had in their life that would make the thought to be so cruel even enter their heads. It’s something that I can’t even wrap my own head around.

I’ve always loved the Plato quote, “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting hard battle.” I’ve seen additions to it, “that you know nothing about” but I don’t think that’s needed. It’s kind of implied.

I haven’t done such a great job with hiding my battle, and that has been both for me, and in my head, I justify the idea that it MIGHT help someone else.

But if you didn’t know me two years ago, or I didn’t open my big mouth, you’d never know that under my flowing top or dress, I had healing tattoos this week. I babble here, not really knowing if anyone reads the words that help me sleep at night. And then getting embarrassed when people praise them.

I know I pointed you to Stuart Scott in my last post. But I think it bears repeating, although this time, replace “cancer” with any kind of hidden battle:

“When you die, it doesn’t mean that you lose to cancer. You beat cancer by how you live, why you live, and in the manner which you live.” – Stuart Scott

But the next line is even more important for folks like Robin Williams, who are fighting a different invisible battle, “So live, LIVE. Fight like hell, and when you get to tired to fight, then lay down, and rest and let somebody else fight for you.”

I know that Robin fought and fought for years. And it sounds like a recent diagnosis just became too much. But I’ve known others fighting depression who use alcohol or other drugs to “self medicate.” Everyone has their own way to cope.

Tonight mine involves a couple of large glasses of wine and a keyboard.

But do all of my ninjas out there, when you need an ear, or a hand. Please know that although my fight goes on, if you need to lay down, I’m happy to help you continue to fight.

That’s what ninjas do.

2 thoughts on “What Lies Beneath

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