Sunday, June 20, 2010

Un-setting my heart.....

During the last week that we were in Costa Rica, Laura emailed me Steven's latest PCR results.... what a darling that young lady is! Obviously my first reaction was absolute joy, and this lasted a good many hours.  But in the quiet of that night and the next few days I realized that I had been moving away from cml, moving away from reading the support groups and getting almost reticent in keeping up with it all, and this was for a good while before we left on our vacation (which was really great!)

Its so easy to move away from it all when Steven is doing so incredibly well.  Its easy to become complacent and let life go by and some would say that that is not a good thing.... but it really worked for me!  I love having the extra space in my mind and heart, I love feeling creative and not thinking about cml for days on end, I love the feeling of freedom.

And then there comes the 'guilt' again, the guilt for not being involved, for not participating, for taking that step backwards.  This lasted until a really amazing lady put me straight in a beautiful and lovely way - that is a letter I will treasure forever :)  Thanks!

It's ok to fill your life with other things, its ok to take that step back and its even necessary and healthy to be slightly, and more, removed from something like a cancer diagnosis, treatment and all, at times.  It's allowed me to be whole again - and yes, I know it's not me with cancer, but it really has affected us all deeply.  Stepping back for  awhile has allowed me to grow again, get stronger, to just be, to kick back and really enjoy the other things going on around me.

I am not suggesting that anyone remove themselves from their situation - just that for me, it was wonderful to take a break from it all, to let things float when all is going well, to put cml on the back burner for a while.

Yesterday I read something that really resonated with me and really does describe what has happened to me since Steven's cml diagnosis.  It was said in relation to a guy having cancer and how he is dealing with it...... here it is:

"It's not a weight on my shoulders anymore, but like an engine on my back."

These words have been winging their way through my mind all day long, bringing a smile to my face.  I realize that since that first horrible, awful, terrible, frightening day, not only have I been terrified, but I have had this engine on my back pushing me past limits I had before.  Limits of learning, limits of friendships, to understanding and limits of accepting things....  What an engine that has been!  That engine has brought me peace and friends that I never imagined, it's brought happiness, depth and love beyond what I could have dreamed.

And another set of words sent to me also resonated deeply:

Un-setting your heart means letting go of your picture of how you want it all to be. It means letting go of trying to control things over which you have no control. One of the prime causes of our suffering is our wanting things to be different than they are. Yes, we all want a peaceful world instead of a world filled with weapons of mass destruction.
Yes, we all want health instead of illness. Yes, we all want healthy, happy children instead of children who break our hearts. But sometimes life doesn't hand us what we want. And when we un-set our hearts from our needing it all to be a certain way, we can breathe a sigh of relief and open the door to a more powerful way of living.
And so I think this is what has happened now ..... my heart got un-set.  And now I can embrace the cml back again into my life with no frilly edges, deeper understanding and yes, a more powerful way of living.  I know that this can, and probably will all change if anything changes with Steven, but hey, for now I am really enjoying it.

And............. we found ourselves another little girl.  Maddie cannot ever replace Sophie, who left a huge hole in our hearts and life, but she definitely makes it much easier and she and Allie are like little whirlwinds of fur playing much of the day.  She is like a little "Mini-me" to Allie, a cuddle pup and she listens sooo well to my ramblings late at night :)

Love and light


Chuckles said...

Your posting has brought back a lot of memories for me. When I was first diagnosed with CML I spent every free moment trying to get information, finding support groups, blogs, etc. I needed to do that to keep my mind sane, to show me there was hope for me. Although I still check the blogs and chat rooms I usually only put my "2 cents worth" in when I can help someone out with what I know or what I have gone through. Sometimes taking a step backwards can push you forward more than you ever thought you can go.
I am glad Steven's results are still good. It is one less thing for you to think about.
Have a great day,

Anonymous said...

Hey Annie,

It sure has been a while but you and Penny were on my mind recently and I thought I would check in. Hope you are doing well. Your blog today was just what I needed to hear :)

Your friend,
Miranda White (Cranbrook, BC)

Annie - Steven's mom said...

Oh Chuck - you are so right in your 'step backwards, go forwards' thoughts... thanks for re-confirming that whats happening is normal.
I hope you are feeling and doing great too!
Miranda! Hi! Email me sometime - I think of you guys often too. All is well this side - hopefully its great there too.
love and light to you both

Anonymous said...

Wow Annie,

I forget sometimes to check out your blog and everytime I do I leave it feeling better and more connected to life and what is important in it! Thank you for sharing so much of yourself and family. You are so open, honest and real.
I love the photos and your snippets on life. I feel grateful you are in mine.