12:38am. Weird. Not particularly the time exactly, rather the thoughts that are keeping me awake. Heading into Elena’s last chemo (Tuesday the 19th!!!) is a strange ride, indeed. I fee like a self medicated schizophrenic with severe bipolar. Yupp. There’s a flooding of relief and excitement. I can’t wait to embrace the clinic nurses as we leave, silently and impossibly thanking them for having taken care of Elena in the manner that they have these past 10 months. Though I truly don’t think it will all feel “real” until her port comes out, and that won’t be until mid June (after scans and one last biopsy). I’m happy and excited and overwhelmed as we come to an end in treatment with her prognosis looking incredible.
But I have been up at night, every night, just so ridiculously scared. Sheer panic and fear for the future is impossible to shake. I read. I read about other children and their journey’s: some years and year off treatment and healthy and happy, some facing a recurrence only months after ending treatment and others losing their lives to this God awful disease. No one knows the future or what tomorrow brings, I get that. I just never thought I would be so afraid of it.
I’m in this limbo of sorts. I feel as if I’m a blank canvas right now…the previous version of myself was utterly destroyed the day Elena was diagnosed. While coming to the end of treatment should mean that it is time to “paint” or “create” or whatever other word you want to use to describe rebuilding and finding yourself again….I’m stuck. Right now I’m just waiting- for her last chemo, end of treatment scans and biopsy and her port removal. After that, having to find this “new normal.” But so hesitant to commit to myself. Losing my identity the way I did was soul crushing to start and I’m terrified of finding myself, of filling up the canvas, only to hear those words again. Once was hard enough. The thought of having to hear it again haunts me every second of everyday. And it is for that reason that I don’t even want to pick up the damn brush, let alone attempt to create anything worthwhile. I see who I am now, the changes in me and who I am becoming because of all of this…but committing to that feels impossible.
So please, bear with me as I start to paint. And I will, I have no doubt. I can’t promise a masterpiece- I’ve never been much of an artist….but I’m working on it.