Today I added a prayer for my fellow warriors onto the prayer wall. Fight on. ✊🏽
The reality of brain cancer. This custom-fitted mesh mask is used to bolt me down on the table while radiation beams are pinpointed at Lyle. This happens 5 times a week for 4 weeks straight.
I stood in the store aisle
Pondering which holiday tablecloth piqued my interest the most–
Red with white snowflakes,
White with silver trees,
Or the rustic reindeer.
My hands fumbled,
Attempting to match fabric napkins
With each design.
People came and went,
Bumping into my cart,
As I still contemplated.
On one such occasion,
I managed to drop some of the tablecloths,
And bending down–
a little too quickly perhaps
My body protested the sudden movement
And pain seared throughout
Leaving me teary-eyed,
When your reality turns out to be fantasy, mind tricks if you will, it can be an earth-shattering, scary thing.
I suspected that the fleeting shadows were figments of my imagination. Sometimes you look from the left to the right too quickly and you think you see something that in reality isn’t there at all. So I ignored them. But today, there was no ignoring you.
I heard the dishes first, early this morning. I knew Mosha wasn’t home, and it piqued my interest enough that I roused from bed and headed to the kitchen–the very empty kitchen. It’s damning because I know what I heard, but I also know what I saw, and they were two very contradicting things. I blamed lack of sleep and new medications as I meandered back to my bed.
I spent time messaging B, and in the midst of that, you appeared, walking alongside my bed, bringing me soup, chastising me for not taking care of myself. Who are you? I had never seen you before today. I didn’t have any sense of familiarity. Just as I began to sit up, you were gone, as quickly as you appeared. Yet you were so very real.
The next logical step would have been to get ahold of my oncologist, to raise the alarm to my medical team, but instead I retreated because of fear and unfamiliarity. I forced myself to sleep, a sleep from which I didn’t wake up from until late evening. Since I woke up, I’ve had a tingling sensation across my head (this is not new, but it has been a while since I’ve experienced it). I ate, plopped on the couch until now, desperately trying to distract myself from today’s happenings. Were they imagined? All evidence points to yes.
After a little prying, Mosha got it out of me, and we decided that first thing, I need to call my medical team. I’m not fearful in the sense that I feel there is a demonic presence in our home, and I don’t believe in ghosts, so that’s not it either. No, I am fairly certain that this is directly related to Lyle or the medications somehow. Best to deal with it sooner rather than later because I can’t imagine living life the way I had to live it today. It isn’t living at all.
Doors. I never knew how scary they could be.
I’m currently sitting in a small medical office, waiting for my doctor to knock on the door before he enters to go over my lab results — results that I already know aren’t positive. I’m not being pessimistic. If you pay attention to your body, you’ll know when things aren’t right. My body has been screaming at me for a long time now, but the cancer had always overridden the diabetes and fibromyalgia. But, as Dr. S. said last week, “it’s time.” Time to get it all under control. Time to stop neglecting the rest of my problems in lieu of the greater ones.
I can hear voices outside the door: other patients and medical staff. Focusing on them does little to calm my anxiety. I don’t want to be here. I want to walk out of the door and not come back. But that would be the irresponsible thing to do. The adult and rational part of me knows that I have to stay. I have to wait for that inevitable knock and the news that is to follow.
My pain has grown so much over the last few weeks. I mostly stay at home now, doped up so I can make it through the day. I barely have any interest in anything. I don’t have an appetite most days. I feel a lump perpetually in my throat. I tend to dread going to bed. I’m almost always exhausted, but lying in bed in the dark means there isn’t anything to distract me from the pain and my overarching situation. I get angry, frustrated and exasperated easily. I’m waiting for the day when it all gets better.
- Reese’s Puffs
- Cookie Crisp
This year has been relatively mellow compared to other years. I haven’t experienced too many exciting things like other years (for example, last year I both graduated with my Bachelor’s degree and was accepted and started law school). My highs this year were mostly simple things.
The one that comes to mind first is that I was appointed the director of our women’s ministry at church. Being appointed any leadership position anywhere is always exciting and a reason to be elated. I’m just excited to be considered a pillar and able to contribute in some way.
Another high, that isn’t a specific instance is just the fact that I’ve been able to focus a little bit more time on my hobbies, most notably playing video games (and learning how to stream my gameplay and my gaming YouTube channel — Thanks to my good friend Daniel0cean!) and my photography. Speaking of photography, I was given a new camera earlier this year, my very first DSLR, which was a big high since the quality is so much better than my old Nikon and I’m now able to purchase lenses for different occasions.
What started as a low, but ended as a high was when I found out that I needed a medical service dog, and then I receive my handsome boy, Milo. I was originally scared, nervous and unhappy about the entire situation, but now I have Milo, and he’s like my personal sidekick. He’s with me all the time, and I love the big guy. I’m already a huge animal person, but I’m especially a dog-lover, and what’s better than having your buddy with you wherever you go?
As for lows, I guess the only thing that I can think of would be illness. My life has been plagued by illness, both old and new diagnoses. But I know that despite the hardships, in the end, I will be stronger because of them.
My top three favorite animals are the honey badger, sloth and llama.
– I like to open the sun roof in my car to keep from feeling closed in.
– My roller derby name is “Rott Wilder” and I’ve dubbed my personal emblem as a zombie Rottweiler.
– My favorite colors are teal and purple, which coincidentally are the original official colors of my favorite sports team, the Arizona Coyotes.
– My all-time favorite cartoon shows are Regular Show, Archer and Daria.
– My favorite weapon is a bow, and I own two professional-grade bows.
– I never get tired of playing video games.
– I’ve dated more women than men in my life.
– My favorite places to travel to are Disney World and Disneyland.
– I am awesome at multitasking.
– I am an artist of multiple mediums: performance poetry, drawer, painting, and photographer.
– I’m obsessed with astronomy, but would never be an astronaut.
– I’m a self-proclaimed zombie extraordinaire.
– I’m a writer. I wrote my first poetry book when I was 8 years old, and my senior year of high school I wrote a full-length novel.
– I have miraculously overcome an incurable disease.
– In high school, I belonged to all the major “stereotypical” groups, including the jocks, artists, creative writers, honor students, band, goths and burnouts.
– I fly kites every chance I get. I have two kites: Timmy the Toucan & Whammy the Whale.
– I’ve read 544 books.
Ode by Arthur O’Shaughnessy
We are the music-makers,
And we are the dreamers of dreams,
Wandering by lone sea-breakers
And sitting by desolate streams;
World losers and world forsakers,
On whom the pale moon gleams:
Yet we are the movers and shakers
Of the world for ever, it seems.
With wonderful deathless ditties
We build up the world’s great cities.
And out of a fabulous story
We fashion an empire’s glory:
One man with a dream, at pleasure,
Shall go forth and conquer a crown;
And three with a new song’s measure
Can trample an empire down.
We, in the ages lying
In the buried past of the earth,
Built Nineveh with our sighing,
And Babel itself with our mirth;
And o’erthrew them with prophesying
To the old of the new world’s worth;
For each age is a dream that is dying,
Or one that is coming to birth.
I like this poem because it’s not only beautiful, but fitting on so many different levels to my life and who I am.
- Change in the House of Flies Deftones
- I’m Into You Chet Faker
- All I Need Is You Lecrae
- Summer Calvin Harris
- Do I Wanna Know? Arctic Monkeys
- Hallelujah Rufus Wainwright
- Forever Kari Jobe
- This Head I Hold Electric Guest
- Me Atmosphere
- In My Time of Dying The Be Good Tanyas
The Witching Hour
by Anne Rice
This may be my all time favorite book. Ever. I first read this book when I was 9 years old. I skimmed through it, reading bits and pieces. As I got older, I kept picking this book up and re-reading it, gleaning more and more of the information contained within the text. So many different stories, so many different characters.
This book has it all: grand plantations, townhouses, a ghost story, family secrets, family history, witches, and a mystery to solve. This novel never fails to suck me in, transport me to the streets of the Garden District and into the Mayfair Family history. I have never been to New Orleans, but I know it would feel familiar if I visited. I would recognize the places in the novel that Anne Rice describes. It wouldn’t surprise me to see a twisted old woman sitting on a screened in porch in a rocking chair and know that she was Deirdre Mayfair, or see an old Englishman standing on a street corner and know it was Aaron Lightner. Anne Rice may not know it, but I think that she may have written one of the best books in literary history with The Witching Hour. I can’t ever get enough of it, that is the basis for a damn good novel: one that you never want to end.
This novel is epic, both in length and in the story. Dr. Rowan Mayfair discovers that she is adopted several years after the death of her adoptive parents and after the death of her biological mother, a woman she never even knew existed. Rowan is an heiress to a massive fortune and a large mansion in the Garden District in New Orleans. Along with the house and fortune, Rowan inherits a massive family with a long and twisted history and a family ghost.
All of Anne Rice’s characters throughout the novel have a tendency to leap off the page and become real for the reader. I can almost hear their voices, accents and inflections in the dialogue, as if I was watching a mini-series in my head. With each re-read of this book, I enjoy it more and more. With each turn of the very last page, I feel as though I have uncovered yet another dark secret from within the novel. A sense of accomplishment comes every time I read the last few words.
Not only have I read this novel over and over again, I have also read every other novel Anne Rice has published to date. I think this book shines brighter than any of her other novels or series. Don’t misunderstand me, I loved reading her other novels, but this one has always seemed like the best of the best. One of the characters in The Witching Hour, Michael Curry, re-reads Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations over and over again because it is his favorite book and never fails to capture his imagination. I feel the same way about The Witching Hour and read it any time I need to escape from reality.
I have mixed feelings about this. I know that some things are lawful, but I don’t believe that they’re beneficial. Its hard because I used to fill my life with too much of both of these, but I guess right now in my life, I see more harm and havoc caused by drugs and alcohol than ever before. So, as of this moment, I think that the world might be better off without these things.
Well, obviously (or obvious to me anyway) the sibling that comes to mind is my older brother and closest sibling, Larry. We grew up the closest in age, and the only two in the household since our other half & step siblings were all so much older than us. We’ve experienced a plethora of things, from child abuse to drugs to suicide attempts, ditching school, family vacations, holidays, death, loss, illness, separation…pretty much everything except war, and even then, our battles feel like a war. We’ve seen more things in our short lives than some people have seen in their entire existence. It’s brought us a lot closer together, but in some ways, our closeness has made our relationship difficult. We are so attached…too attached some would say, than when there is a riff, it can be a big one. Pain is magnified in our relationship. When we don’t agree, it’s not just a simple disagreement, but rather a painful tearing apart of our melded beings. I feel (more recently) that I hold back some of what I think or feel because I want to keep peace between us, and also because I know that realistically, we are our own beings…He needs to make his own decisions, just like I have to make mine. I may not like certain things, but its not my life to live. I can’t always be the protective sister. I don’t want to be the sister who always has something to say, but rather the sister who was always there, always supportive, always available, because if I’m being honest with myself, no matter what choices he makes, I will be there always. I will never leave his side. We have both been left by too many people, and at least I can give him the reassurance that he doesn’t have to experience loss when it comes to me.
As for my step siblings, well, I’m okay with them. We speak occasionally. We like each other just fine. I think my only quips with them is that I don’t understand their issue with our father: their father, my dad. They’re naive enough to believe lies about him, and granted, maybe back in their childhood he wasn’t who he is today. But they don’t even allow a second chance, despite the fact that seen him since he’s become a better person. I’ve seen them take advantage of him to get what they want. That, quite frankly, pisses me off. He’s an amazing dad…more dad than they deserve. When I get to thinking about their relationship with him, all my warm fuzzies for them dissipate. I love my dad way more than them, and it’s not okay that they don’t appreciate or bother to acknowledge him. The way I see it, it’s their loss.
This may not be disgusting to other people, but to me it is. I have a nasty habit of letting insecurity get the best of me sometimes. It’s definitely not something that I’m proud of at all. I would love to be totally comfortable in my skin, but that just doesn’t happen. There are so many things in life that can make you question yourself…make you think twice about who you are. Life is bombarded with media and unrealistic expectations. Everything is a competition. People have unreasonable standards. I get disgusted when I’m insecure because I’m a smart woman…I know that women on magazine covers are photoshopped, and I’ve seen the pictures of these gorgeous celebrities without their makeup, and some of them look worse than I do. Still, it’s hard to stop myself from wishing that I was smaller here, larger there, smoother over there, and the list goes on. If I could have my way, I wouldn’t experience the mental ping pong game of feeling secure one minute and then seeing some 17 year old who looks absolutely gorgeous and who unknowingly makes me feel unhappy with myself.
- Thank you for the experience.
- I’m sorry for all of my stupidity, insecurity, and everything else that I did that made our relationship unhealthy.
- I forgive you for everything you did to me, and the pain you caused (all of it…emotional, mental and physical).
- I don’t have any regrets. It was rough, unhealthy, and many other negative things, but I’m a better person because of what happened between us. For that, I will never regret the experience we shared.
I’m currently most worried about school. (Big surprise, huh?) I’ve missed time from being sick…a lot of time. Law school is no joke, and it’s so easy to fall behind. Taking almost a month off due to illness is not exactly something that is easy to bounce back from. I returned to school this week, and while the days went by pretty painlessly, I know that I still have a lot of reading to do to actually be caught up. Finals will approach quicker than I would like (mid-December) and I just wish I could go back in time and do more reading/staying caught up while I was sick.
I know that I shouldn’t worry as much as I am. I need to stop worrying and just discipline myself to get all my reading done and get on track asap. Disciplining myself is the hardest part. Law school has lost its zeal, so I’m constantly dragging my feet to get things done, and it’s not any better when you have a whole month’s worth of work staring at you in the face.
Guess it’s just time to stop worrying and start doing…
5 things that irritate you about the opposite sex and 5 things that irritate you about the same sex
Five things that irritate me about the opposite sex:
— A big thing that irritates me about men is when they treat women like they’re crazy when we get emotional. God made us emotional…men are emotional, too, but just not as much as we are. But there is no good reason to treat us like we are total psychos just because we are more prone to cry or experience some other emotion. Don’t get me wrong…I know that some women really are psycho, but that’s not what I’m talking about here. I’m talking about men who use emotions as the sole basis for acting like a woman or women are crazy.
— Going along with this first one, I have an issue with men who are too “macho” to show emotions. I understand that not everyone deals with things the same way, and there is nothing wrong with that. But I do have an issue when men deliberately suppress how they feel or how they would like to react based on the fact that they feel their machismo will be affected by showing vulnerability. Not cool.
— I hate when men fart under the covers, then hold your head under it. I guess this would also go for something I hate about women, but I haven’t had a woman do it to me yet, so right now it’s only in my men column.
— I don’t like men who act superior to women because they think that we are less than them or that we are inadequate because we have different anatomy. In this category fall men who take their superiority to heightened levels and beat women, or are womanizers, etc.
— I get irritated when men don’t think that I can “hang” or hold a semi-intelligent conversation when the topic is something that is normally “manly” like video games, sports, cars or other things like that. I do understand football, I know how to change my own tire, and I will probably beat you at any video game you own. Just sayin’.
Five things that irritate me about the same sex:
— Being a liar, backstabber, gossiper, or anything else in that category. I get irritated when men do the same, but I’ve encountered this more with women. A lot of women succumb to peer pressure and lie when it will make them look good, or gossip because they want to fit in, or betray others for their own furtherance in life. It’s just not cool.
— Insecurity. Now I am still insecure…I’ve grown a lot in this department and definitely have more of a “fuck it” attitude when it comes to what other people think of me. But a lot of women are insecure and don’t do anything about it. They choose to live in their insecurity without trying to change it. Those type of women irritate me. It also doesn’t help that most of these women seek out their security from others (mostly men or affirmation) when they should be trying to find security within themselves. What good is it to get all your security from a guy when that relationship is not guaranteed? What happens when your crutch can no longer be your crutch? What then?
— This goes along with the previous point, but I get irritated with women who don’t help themselves and expect others to do everything for them. There is someone in my life now who complains a lot about her weight, sickness and overall well-being, but she makes the worst choices…she continues to eat junk food constantly, doesn’t try to better the things that she’s complaining about at all. If you don’t help yourself, then don’t complain to me.
— I get irritated with women who love to gossip to me, and then get mad when I don’t want to hear it or when I don’t agree with them or when I tell them to stop. I’m sorry that I’m not like you. But hey, at least you know that if you tell me anything, I’m not going to go blab about it to everyone else.
— I get irritate with women who refuse to see their own beauty and just be themselves. We are all gorgeous, unique creatures, and we should own it!
I’ve actually changed quite a bit in the last two years. The last two years have mainly consisted of my time in law school, and boy does law school change you. Initially, I was more dedicated. I think anytime you start something new you go into it with a fresh mind, and overly eager and determined to do your best. Like most things, as time passes, that zeal slowly fades away and it just becomes something else that you do. The same applies to law school. Now I find myself dragging myself to class…wishing that this thing ends soon, and even though graduation is rapidly approaching, it’s not arriving soon enough. Sometimes I feel like law school sucked out some of my happiness from life…She’s a bitch, and a demanding one at that…never quite satisfied with the amount of time you give her. You devote yourself to her, and the only thanks you get is an order for more of your life. In the last two years, I’ve come to bitterly resent her. I’ll be glad when I’m finally able to break up with her in April.
As a person, I’ve learned to calm the heck down. I don’t overthink things so much anymore. I know how to just go with the flow, and when to keep my mouth shut and my thoughts to myself. Sometimes if I’m bold, I’ll write them down in this journal, making sure that I’m not too harsh in case the words in this confession-book are ever read after I die. The changes to my personality over the last few years have definitely been for the better, though. I don’t get worked up as easily as I used to, and I’m much more happy overall. Law school is the only thing in my life that I truly feel negatively toward, and even then, it’s taught me to appreciate the more important things in life, like family and loved ones and of course, God.
So overall, the last two years have been good to me…shaping me into a more carefree, mature person. (Except when I’m at school. That’s a different story.)
Hmm, well, this is an interesting way to start a writing challenge. I do a lot of things when I’m alone, like talking to myself, but I don’t really think that could be considered “weird” because I’m sure that I’m not the only person to converse with myself. I guess one thing that I do that is weird is dance a lot…in front of the mirror. Sometimes I will be watching music videos on TV or some show that has dancing and the thought that I’m capable of reenacting what they’re doing creeps into my brain and next thing I know, I’m in the bathroom with the door shut, dancing in front of the mirror. I pretty much hate dancing in front of other people, mainly because I think that I suck, but I do it often when I’m by myself. I get down with the get down!
I do a bunch of other things…I guess another weird thing that I do would be checking my body for new things. No, not those kinds of things, I mean, I’m not planning on sprouting a penis or anything like that, but sometimes I find an extra-long hair on my arm or a new mole, or what appears to be a black head or something equally unattractive, and then I go to whatever length to get rid of the abomination. It must be terminated. Plus, I think it’s kind of fascinating when I find a new mole that wasn’t there before, and then I come to my senses and start wondering if I’m developing melanoma or something. Overthinking, I guess.
- Weird things you do when you’re alone
- How have you changed in the past 2 years?
- 5 things that irritate you about the opposite sex and 5 things that irritate you about the same sex
- Something you’re currently worried about
- Things you want to say to an ex
- Something disgusting you do
- Talk about your siblings
- Your views on drugs/alcohol
- Your favorite book and why
- A list of your top 10 favorite songs
- A quote/lyrics that you like and why
- Your highs/lows this past year
- Someone who fascinates you and why
- List 20 facts about yourself
- What is your favorite movie and why
- Describe something you miss
- Write about something you could never get tired of doing
- Write a note to your past self
- Write a note to your future self
- Write about your hobbies
- Five words/phrases that make you laugh
- Describe your day today
- Who is your favorite musician and why?
- Describe 5 things on your bucket list
- Three confessions of your choice
- If the world were to end tomorrow, what would you do in your last 24 hours?
- Describe the worst meal you’ve ever eaten
- What would you like to find at the end of a rainbow?
- If there could only be 2 brands of cereal left in the world, what would you choose?
- Write about something that you’re proud of