Day 31: A new normal
That should probably be new normal(s) – there will be ongoing adjustments. These adjustments include things like successfully riding the wave of emotion back to solid ground when I sit down for a minute at night and stop moving. It also includes pushing through constant interruptions, like a call from your oncologist during a staff meeting or new tests and appointments that you simply make time for and the subsequent rearranging of the rest of your schedule (and everyone else) in the process.
Another new normal is talking about your breasts… Your boobs. A part of your body that isn’t normally discussed at all is now discussed in great detail. It’s like they go from the over sexualized body part that the media portrays them to be to all this sudden being a ginormous temporary part of your being. 31 days ago I had a hard enough time saying “inverted nipple” to my doctor, now many conversations include many such previously taboo words.
One new normal that has completely blown me away is how loving, genuine, supportive and freely giving friends, fellow warriors and survivors all are. I think this journey could be much more scary and very lonely if I tried to keep it all to myself. By talking with friends and coworkers I have unwittingly had battalions of prayer warriors I’ve never met pop-up, had thoughtful gifts that brighten my day, have received so much knowledge that I otherwise would not have had access to or would have tried to google solutions for thinking that surely someone somewhere surely has thought of a way to deal with this. My staff, who are gently and skillfully managing up and helping take things off my plate, I don’t how to thank them. It seems to me that it’s an art form to take on the extra without making me feel inept or themselves looking overburdened in a nonprofit with already tightly budgeted hours and overfilled in-boxes. How very very much I value all my people right now.
I am also being given the opportunity to be there for others. I’ve had messages from others I know and some I don’t that are struggling with the same things I am but are not comfortable broadcasting to the world like I am. We all process differently but battles sure feel different when someone’s got your six. Even snipers don’t work “alone.”
Along with the anxiety I talked about yesterday comes a LOT of gratitude and appreciation in the new normals. There are many silver linings and blessings and honestly much for which I am thankful.