Tuesday, 12 June 2012

ap - pear - ance

ap - pear - ance

 noun:       1. The way that someone or something looks. 

There are so many things about cancer that change you physically. 

Cancer Treatment. Side Effects. Scars from Surgery. Changes in Body Weight.

These aspects of Cancer affect how you feel about yourself and how people react to you. Self confidence can take a wee bit of knock....

This brings me back to highlighting how amazing and important Look good Feel better is for Woman going through Cancer. While I found the whole experience incredibly informative and helpful, I have hit a wee wall with how I feel about myself. So close to the end.....

For the past week I have experienced a little longing for the way I used to look. It has never been something I have thought of and I guess it would be something I never noticed. That was until I saw a photo of myself before I was diagnosed.

I remember being told that I would change physically. By my Nurse, survivors and at the Look Good Feel Better programme. You would think that I would notice it happening. Sure - I noticed the hair loss. Everything either falls out or thins. My eye brows for example, are something I miss. I havent lost mine but they have thinned a lot and its not something that bothered me until I noticed. You must thinking - Have you not been looking in a mirror for the last 6 months Andrea?? haha
I have.
I guess with the end looming, the longing for the end is great and the longing for a Cancer free normality and appearance is strong. 

Little vent. Moving on.

Last night was the last of The Living well programme that Cam & I have been going to. Have to say I am really quite sad that its over. I will miss going every Tuesday and catching up with everyone. Again - each one so different but each one amazing. It was such a pleasure to be a part of. I was also sad that some that were there at the beginning were no longer with us. A cruel part that comes along with it. 
Each week we had a different topic that was covered.
What is Cancer? How to talk to your GP and medical professionals. Dealing with Anxiety. Nutrition. And last night we had a real treat.
Tony Barnett may ring a bell with a few of you Nelsonians who may read this. He is the Chaplin at Nelson Hospice and an amazing person. I could seriously listen to him talk for hours. He spoke to us about ways to cope. His tips could be transferred into any situation in life. From grief to just day to day life. One of his points that really sparked something in my brain was Accept what you cant change.

Life. You cant change your journey. You can pick your attitude towards life and how you will live it but you cant physically change what is going to happen to you. While its something we all know, I know its something we all forget. I cant change that I had Cancer. I cant and I wouldn't. Sure it hasn't been easy but I cant change it so there is no point in getting upset about it. Things are going to happen in life that are going to annoy and upset you but if you harbor anger instead of accepting that you cant change it, its not going to be a pleasant time for you.
Time seemed to flutter by as he captivated and entertained us. Before we knew it, it was home time.
We exchanged details and are going to hopefully have monthly catch ups. I truly look forward to them.

The lovely ladies that organised and ran the group made us each a certificate. Each one unique, with a sentence on things that are our individual strengths. They were so lovely and each persons sentence suited them perfectly.

Cams - "IT Man. Having the strength to use your biceps and wisdom to know when to be tender."
....Haha bit of an inside joke but it made us all laugh.....

Mine - "Having the courage to live your truth. Being prepared to take on the nitty gritty. Being honest."

It was a nice wee surprise and put a smile on each of our faces. I will truly miss the Tuesday catch ups.
I have joked with friends that I may end up being one of those crazy group people. Like I go to all sorts of groups, even if the situation doesn't apply to me,  just because I enjoy meeting people......haha like the Mum on Bridesmaids. I could very well end up being like her.

To say I am looking forward to next week is a huge understatement. Bring it on. It cant come quick enough.

Accept what you cant change. Thats what I would love for you all to remember.


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