For the first time a blind shield was lifted today as I walk across the tight rope that I walk so finely each and every day. Things lately have been ever so windy and I have been dangling from that tight rope, hanging on for life, wishing I could start again or finish quickly. I’ve been absent, hushed from my writings and mum from the world. Many things have been taking place in our lives as of late, we’ve been taking the hits as they’ve been coming, but we have each other.

Through the many storms that I have weathered, I’ve recently allowed them to harden my exterior and becoming a prisoner, trapped, experiencing monsoons eroding from within. This weekend I was finally able to slow it down, realizing that friends and family exist and no matter the troubles that are taking place, there is goodness within the chaos as it churns and its not us against the world.

Britt

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#3 Cancerversary Q & A:

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Q: What makes you smile these days?

A: Family. I’ve been getting a lot of family time in lately, both on my side and Steve’s side and it brings the biggest smile to my face. It’s so important and it literally makes my heart beam with happiness. Also, Zoila my little sausage dog – when she’s not being naughty and chewing up my adidas shoes!

Q: Did you learn anything in your third year of battling cancer?

A: Of course. It was such a journey this year for me. I learned how to be humble and forgive and be forgiving. It could be very easy for me to be angry and bitter over what my body has had to endure, but I am choosing to accept that this is what was meant to happen to me, accept my journey and move on from it. The hardest part is knowing that I’ll never be able to give Steve a biological child. However he is so forgiving of that and for that I am the luckiest.

Q: What has been your most memorable moment in the last year?

A: This year has been full of many ups and downs. I’d say the most memorable would be bringing Zoila home for the first time. For Steve and I it was the equivalent to bringing home our baby. Something we’ll most likely never have the opportunity of knowing what that feels like, but when we brought her home we were both on cloud nine. On another note, finding out that I had 5-11 months to live and when Steve and I were given the news we went straight to the casino. We try to live life for the moment and not let things get us down. He’s my hero for that.

Q: What have you done to make your life less stressful?

A: I’ve stuck to my zero bullshit tolerance. I often walk on such a fine line of being content and depressed and in order to remain on the positive side of things I’ve learned that I need to protect myself. It’s a challenge.

Q: Are you carrying any excess baggage into your fourth year as a cancer patient?

A: Yes, I’m still trying to find my motivation. I’d say I have lost it some where along the way – I’m not sure where or how but I’m trying to find it again. It’s a tricky thing. For so many years I had so many goals to work towards and then when cancer came along my sole goal was survival, staying alive and everything else ceased to exist. This year I need to find myself again, refocus on what makes me tick and what makes me happy.

Q: Is there anyone that deserves a big “THANK YOU”?

A: Dr. Galliano – my surgeon that removed the basketball tumor from my uterus and performed my hysterectomy. Without that man I wouldn’t be here writing this today. HE’S the reason I am ALIVE and also the reason I switched over to Mayo Clinic. In his words he told Steve, “If she were my wife, she’d be going to Mayo Clinic.” And the rest is history. Because of the switch, my tumor markers are now at 3.8 which is the lowest they have EVER been since I have been diagnosed with Colon Cancer and they have my chemo down to an absolute science, allowing me to have a quality of life. Also, anyone out there, family, friends, supporters who are there cheering me on – I so appreciate you more than you know, so thank you! xx

Q: What are your top three goals for the next year?

A: Continue to stay in a good frame, a positive frame of mind. It’s mind over matter after all. Travel a bit here and there. And get my groove back in terms of motivation proclamation.

Q: What has the biggest lesson been so far with having cancer?

A: From pain, comes beautiful lessons and from beautiful lessons comes peace.

Q: What are your fears?

A: The same as always, letting fear win. Once fear enters the mind, it takes over the body and I can’t afford to let that happen.

Q: What have you struggled with in the last year that you want to change?

A: Again going back to setting goals for myself and sticking with them. Action follows focus.

Q: What can you do today that you were not capable of a year ago?

A: I can do more. A year ago when I was on chemo I would be bedridden. Now I have a quality of life, I can be 30 and go out with my friends and family and live the life that I have with enjoyment!

Q: What word best describes the way you’ve spent the last year of your life?

A: Survival.

Q: In one year from today, how do you think your life will be different?

A: Hopefully my cancer will still be in a manageable place, where I can continue to have a quality of life. Second to that, I hope to get published and see the book lined on shelves for everyone to read. High hopes, always!

Q: What have you learned about yourself in the last three years that you have been a cancer patient?

A: I’m a survivor – that’s for damn sure!

Q: What is one thing right now that you are totally sure of?

A: That life and people are so precious – never take anything or anyone for granted.

Q: What question do you often ask yourself?

A: What is this life?

Q: Time or money?

A: Time. It’s such a strange concept to me.

Q: What is your wish for the next year of your life?

A: Peace, always.

My Crystal Baller: 🔮

Happy Birthday

It’s been said a time or two that opposites attract. Crystal and I are the mere definition of that saying. However, our relationship has been fierce from the start. Nearly three decades of one million memories, ten thousand jokes, one hundred shared secrets, all for one reason: best friends. Today is my number ones 30th Birthday and I couldn’t have enough lovely things to say about my unbiological sister and how happy I am that I found her in this big, wide world.

Crystal, there’s not many things that our friendship hasn’t endured. From the time we were little you were a sweet cupcake in a world full of muffins. We’ve been through crazy times, weddings, funerals, good times and bad, but we’ve never turned our backs on one another — even when we did a little soul searching of our own we were still imprinted on one another’s hearts and souls. May the next thirty years be just the same.

My wish for your coming year is that it’s filled with a little magic and madness, but the good kind of folly. Travel to your hearts desire, see the world and share your many adventures. While you’re at it, read some fine books along the way and get lost in the words and your imagination. Sing at the top of your lungs, Mariah Carey style. Relax and let the world spin madly on, whilst you sip on a fine glass of wine. Do something to surprise yourself. Treat yourself and splurge on something without feeling the slightest bit guilty. Live only as you can. And most importantly, come visit your best friend. Just remember, in an mmmbop it’s gone. Happy 30th my beautiful forever friend. I love you more than any word I could ever write.

Love your best friend for eternity,

Britt x

Lets Talk About Sex:

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At thirty I should be in my sexual prime – rejoicing in my Scorpio traits and thinking of sex more often than not. Instead, sex is an after thought as I am too busy sticking my head in the freezer from the hot flashes, taking my daily dose of crazy pills and slapping on a menopausal patch every other week to keep my estrogen levels at bay.

The early stages of my diagnoses no one explained that cancer and sex go hand in hand, against each other that is. Particularly when you throw in a full-blown hysterectomy, chemotherapy, twenty different medications on a daily basis and menopause. First things first, I’d like to take a moment to state that I find my husband extremely attractive and I love everything about him. He deserves a medal for his patience and understanding while I figure out what my body is going through and my sexual stance, or rather my libido’s attitude given all of its defiance to cancer.

It is both frustrating and isolating to have the body of a thirty year old and on the inside something more like an eighty year old. My husband has never wavered on making me feel like a sexy goddess, even with my buzzed haircut, battle scars and weak body. His touch leaves sparks and his kiss lights off fireworks, yet my libido is still not incommunicado.

In speaking with my Gynecologist, she informed me that there is not any FDA approved medications out there for women, particularly who have a history of cancer that could increase sex drive. Nada, nil, nothin’. What’s a girl to do? The intimacy between my husband and I is an important element in our relationship. Granted it is not the only variable that makes us, us, but I for one miss it and I sure as hell know he must. He’s a saint for Christ sake.

My question is, why is there not a bigger conversation out there for young adults, young women whom are going through such a thing? Why isn’t cancer and sex in the same vocabulary? Cancer isn’t a death sentence and therefore your sex life shouldn’t follow suit.

Understandably this is an uncomfortable subject, but it’s the real deal. I am not ready to give up a consistent, pleasurable sex life and have it die off in the name of cancer. There has got to be a resolution to this problem and I am going to find it, so help me God. Lets get the conversation going, lets figure out a way for cancer patients and survivors alike to be able to have a quality of life, including pleasure. Lets talk about sex.

Love,

Britt xx

As Long As I Got You: K-Babe ♡

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For as down on my luck as I have been in the last few years, I have lucked out as far as the kids that are a part of my world.  Particularly with my little, lovely, clever and beautiful,Kambrell, my K-babe.  If you would have told me seven years ago when I partnered up with my now hubby, that I would gain the best little partner in crime, I would have squealed with excitement.  

When I was diagnosed with cancer, the notion of having children quickly went out of the window, particularly after having my hysterectomy.  Recently the thought of adoption seems non-existent and out of the question for Steve and I.  Who is going to allow a Stage IV cancer patient with a life long illness adopt a child?  I know, I know — it seems like a pessimistic outlook but I must be realistic.  The thing is, I’m not fretting because I have claimed someone for myself.  Someone who has stood the test of time, who has been there for me through it all,  who has laid next to me when I have been at my sickest and laughed with me at my very best.

When my life has lost it’s meaning, she saved me from myself.  As long as I’ve got her and she’s got me and together we can be, well that’s swell.  I’m so grateful for nights like tonight where I can take part of her world and attend things like her talent show where she was the superstar MC.  It makes me realize that I do not need children to feel complete.  I have a wonderful child that I am able to share in her universe and that makes me feel utterly complete.

K-babe, you know I love ya, you rocking’ robin.

 

Love,

Britt x