Hollywood Script: Cancer & Love

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Typically I scoff at Hollywood’s portrayal of cancer.  Particularly chemotherapy.  Only because I have personal experience. I don’t know.  Maybe it’s me.  Maybe not.  But, in any case I feel that it doesn’t do it any justice.  And of course it wouldn’t and it shouldn’t.  They’re acting, after all and  I wouldn’t want them and by “them,” I mean the actors, to feel even a fraction of what a cancer patient has to go through.  However, I will say, this chemo round, chemo 3.3 we’ll call it, has been pretty on par with the Hollywood script of what cancer looks like.  

Keep in mind, my head is now buzzed.  So from a physicality standpoint, I look a little more like a cancer patient these days, whatever that is supposed to mean.  I guess once again I am referring to what Hollywood depicts.  Picture a standard, five star type of white robe on a once meaty body that is slowly getting less and less thick by the day.  Each Doctor’s visit, the scale becoming less and less, something most women dream for under normal circumstances.  Pale, weak and hanging over the cold porcelain toilet.  Imagine your worst hangover times a squillion, headache and all.  Textbook chemotherapy, textbook Hollywood script.

Last weekend, my best friend, Crystal was in town.  My sister from another mister.  Seriously.  We grew up together.  My brother’s and sister didn’t come into the picture until I was eleven, so Crystal and I grew up like sister’s.  We met on Halloween.  One of my favorite holidays, next to New Years, where I met my other best friend Allison.  I meet all the greats on holidays.  Even meeting Steve the day before the 4th of July — so I count that.  I digress.  Crystal was in town and what I love about our friendship group is that we’re all inclusive.  We all gathered together and celebrated being alive, young, happy and the wonderful things that each of us have going on in our lives and the friendship we share.  There was a big group of us.  And a rare occasion these days,  as I have become such a homebody since treatment has picked back up.

When we got home from the Irish pub that we regularly attend when we actually do make it out of the house, Steve and I sat outside on the chaise lounge on the terrace of our condo.  It was far past closing time, so it must have been three in the morning.  I nestled my head into his chest and we both put our feet up on the table that was before us.

With so many serious conversations under our belt, we looked up at the stars and Steve whispered, “You’re not allowed to leave me.”  

I of course knew what he meant.  He didn’t mean leave him, as in pack up my belongings and move out and onward.  He meant leave him as in from earth — leave him alone in this big world.  I tenderly squeezed his hand knowing it was a promise I couldn’t make.  Tears began streaming down my face as my heart began to ache for him and selfishly, myself.

We sat in silence both knowing what the outcome would eventually be.  Without words it was as though we both realized our love and resiliency was bigger than any Hollywood movie script could ever depict with regards to both love and cancer.  We kissed under the stars like it was our first kiss almost seven lucky years ago.  Sometimes life doesn’t make sense, but I can’t think of anyone I’d rather figure it out with than my man-bun, Ben Sherman wearing, House of Cards obsessed, hubby. xx

Love,

Britt x

In Bed W. Britt: #BSMHB

This is what happens when you’ve lost sense of space and time, but enjoy yourself nonetheless.

Cheers,

Britt x

Sunday: Sitting Naked Smoking a Joint B/C I Can

Moments ago I sat on our outdoor chaise, smoking a joint out of an Audrey Hepburn like fashion cigarette holder, only mine was good old fashioned Mary Jane, not a ciggy.  The backdrop being pure zen as the Japanese Friendship Garden takes my breath away, although I see it day after day.

Hance park, behind the garden just so happens to be hosting Mountain McDowell Music Festival over the weekend, where the likes of Beck and Animal Collective were a part of the line up.  Being blessed with our location in Downtown Phoenix, we were able to hear the show as if we were present.  It was clear as day, all three days!  Whilst enjoying my smokey treat, the band, The Senators were up, soothing me and the rest of the actual MMMF goers with their song, Music From Another Room and I thought how fitting. 

Here I sit, in another room, per usual because of my resistance to join the rest of the public in fear of my condition.  Just yesterday Steve, myself, my family and a ton of friends went to the horse track, as they held the annual wiener races and we of course now have our little, Zoila — sausage dog.  That morning as we were gearing up to go, I felt extremely fatigued, dizzy, clammy, so on and so forth.  Mind you, within the last few weeks I have had chemo (poison) pumped into my body, switched a total of four large doses of vital medications and was placed on hormone replacements due to going through menopause at the ripe age of thirty.  Intense doesn’t even begin to skim the surface.  Long story short, I put on a brave face, per good form and off to the races we went.

Typically for me, it’s a mixed bag of nuts going out in public, meaning anything outside of Doctor’s visits and affiliate/branding jobs.  Perhaps it’s because I’m a bit nuts myself, but  often times I suffer from anxiety because I shelter myself in so many ways.  I get weirded out and nervous thinking and believing that people are weirded out and nervous by my cancer.  The reality is, that I am able to comprehend that the world does not orbit around me and that it is all in my head.  But, hey, these are the things that go through my head and I’m being honest here.  This is my circle of truth.  Then by that point, once we arrive and I see all of the beautiful faces of my family and friends all of the woes and worries of the world seemingly disappear.  That along with the spirit of my reality and my set of circumstances, as I am able to giggle and escape in which case I would take over a doobie any second.  That is the highest of all highs.  A high that any Doctor or Dispensary cannot provide.

Although we had to leave the races early and take a little visit to the Mayo Hospital, I was cleared and sent home with good news that I was just dehydrated and out of whack due to my recent changes in medication.  But, even if it was for a sliver of a second, I was able to be normal and engage with friends and loved ones, crack open a beer, enjoy the sunshine, smile at strangers, wait in the ridiculously long ladies restroom line.  You know, normal stuff.  It’s the small things, truly.

On our way home from the hospital Steve and I were starved being that we hadn’t eaten, had been in the sun and then to follow had been at the hospital.  We decided to go on a classy date to Chino Bandido, a delicacy for Phoenicians, a Mexican and Chinese combined taker-outeree.  It’s the least classiest place I can think of, but by far the most delicious.  We chowed down, crashed on the bed as soon as we walked through the door and other than watching American Restoration and answering boring emails today, you’re pretty much up to date.

Yet, there is a point to all of this rambling.  As I lay on my terrace on my chaise lounge, listening to The Senators at MMMF, I realized it’s okay that I cannot do it all anymore.  These are the cards I have been dealt.  Instead, I decided to strip down to my birthday suit. You heard me, correctly.  I got completely stark NAKED, smoked the hell out of my joint and escaped to the most beautiful and cerebral place that exists only in my mind.

I live on such an extreme spectrum in life and I’m not quite sure if I will ever figure that spectrum out, or rather if it will figure me out. And perhaps that’s for the best.  Things come to me in other ways; I am so in tune with myself in a rainbow of other ways and at the same time I am a complicated woman, a Scorpio woman at that.  But damn, it felt so emancipating and comforting all at once, to stand in front of the sunshine in my bare, raw state — showing my scars and my body without any shame or guilt for who I was in that very moment.

I can only wish that everyone experiences such nirvana.

Have a beautiful sabbath day if that is your thing, beautiful ones. Otherwise, peace and love, always.

Love forev,

Britt x

#BSMHB Update: Cheeky, Cheeky ♡

It’s Official: www.BeStillMyHeartBlog.com

It’s official.

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Be Still My Heart Blog is officially a dot com. A new year is upon us, as well as a new me and overall content of #BSMHB. I had mentioned previously that I was gearing more towards a lifestyle story, if you will, through pictures and words. Having cancer tends to throw a wrench into things at the most inconvenient times. Yet, I won’t allow that to set me back, babes.

Now that I am moving around a bit easier and the pain is lessoning day by day, I want to show the world how wonderful, colorful and interesting life can be despite having terminal cancer. (I am still writing about everything that recently occurred with my medical situation and wrapping my head around it all.  Blog to come on that…)

In lieu of that, to officially kick off the lifestyle variety aspect of my blog, including fashion, photography and blah, blah — you know, I have been collecting questions I have received via email and included some extra that you’ll hopefully jive with.

Q + A with Be Still My Heart Blog


Q: How would you best describe your style?

A: I’m drawn to anything that resembles the 1960’s. That’s an era in terms of fashion that I would have loved to be a part of. The 90’s grunge is also something I’m highly attracted to. I guess my style could be described as retro grunge. I’m going to make that a thing, although I’m sure it already is?


Q: Who would you say is your number one fashion inspiration?

A: Devious question because I have many. But the one specifically coming to mind is, Edie Sedgwick. She was so ahead of her time, fashion forward in all of her glory.


Q: What made you decide to start blogging? 

A: Not many people know this, but I actually started a fashion/travel/lifestyle type of blog back in 2008 or so. I loved doing it, I loved the creative freedom of being able to compartmentalize my thoughts both visually and textually. Then once I was diagnosed with cancer, I began #BSMHB as a way to document everything that was happening in my life. But now I am ready to share a lot of other aspects of myself and my life outside of just cancer; what it is like to be young(ish), up-to-the-minute and pumped with chemo.


Q: Nylon or Vogue?

A: Nylon all the way. I’ve read both for years, but I always seem to connect more with the content amongst everything else that Nylon has to offer as a magazine publication.  Cosmo is also my jam. Sorry,  Anna Wintour.


Q: What are some of your current fashion obsessions?

A: Buttons. Flare. Pin-bling. Everything I own — jacket wise has a button or five on it. CAN’T STOP. WON’T STOP.


Q: What type of camera do you use?

A: An iPhone — I’m not a pro, but I can imagine to be.


Q: What is your dream job?

A: It’s funny, I don’t think I would be able to go back to working for anyone again.  I guess never say never, but I’ve realized I’m better off doing my own thing, freelancing creatively. I’d say Author would be at the top of my list. Anything in the creative realm is a dream, really.


Q: Name your Top 3 favorite bands:

A: Easy — 1) The Beatles 2) Third Eye Blind 3) The Format


Q: Do you prefer music on Vinyl? CD? or Download?

A: Who doesn’t prefer their music on Vinyl? The cracks are the best part. This year I joined the best “box” club called Vinyl Me Please and each month I receive a new vinyl. So far they’ve all been badass and totally exciting to get new music in the post every month.


Q: Favorite makeup brand?

A: I’ve got to say, I’m a MAC girl, through and through. I’ve veered over to Nars, Dior, Urban Decay — you name it, but I always swerve back for MAC. Pharmacy makeup impresses me at times though, i.e.- Rimmel London. Oh yas.


Q: Marilyn Monroe or Audrey Hepburn?

A: Sorry, Brigitte Bardot. She’s the ultimate babe in my book — and Jackie O., I love her so.


Q: How many tattoos do you have?

A: If my Nan had been asked this question, she’d say, ‘one too many’. But, I believe I have eight, but most of them are dainty, except for my Hamsa.


Q: Favorite Quote?

A: “You live but once; you might as well make it amusing.” – Coco Chanel


Q: What is one thing your readers would be surprised to hear?

A: Probably my half American/British accent that switches on an off. (lol) — otherwise, I hope my readers continue to enjoy the content and a peek inside the day to day lifestyle of a young cancer chick. #AWARENESS and #STYLE will go hand in hand, just you watch.


E-mail me (link on sidebar) if you have any questions or want to connect!  And watch out for some outfits on the blog.

Big X,

Britt