Tuesday, November 18, 2014


My family always ate meals together at the table.  All three meals.  Farm families can do that. Breakfast of pancakes and gravy.  Big dinner of roast beef and potatoes at noon, and usually soup for supper.  Something to be said about sitting around the table looking at each other that many times a day.  At breakfast we always had the radio on to catch the news, usually weather, because that was the only news that really mattered to farmers.  At dinner (lunch to most) we would talk about the day, the crops, the weather, the jobs that needed doing, and of course how good the food was.  And at supper, we talked about everyone's day.  What we did, how we felt and how we could make the next day better.

My brother, Rod and I sat on a bench by a big glass window.  I fell backwards through that window when I was very small, but have no memory of the incident, only a long scar on my thumb.  But I do remember that we sat on that bench every meal of every day. for most of my growing up years.

One dinner meal is vividly picturesque in my mind.  As usual, we had gone to Broken Bow (about 40 miles away} on a Sat. morning.  I had my piano lessons every Saturday morning while my parents bought the week's groceries.  This particular Saturday after piano lessons. my mom took me into the Ben Franklin store and together we bought my first bra.  I selected a finely padded bra to give rise to my barely budding breasts.  I was so proud.

We got home in time for our noon meal.  I sat on the bench I had always sat on, but now I was voluptuous. I had on my padded bra, and I stuck out like nobodies business.  Well, my brothers had a hay day.  Needless to say, I was embarrassed.  But, I was getting them, tits, and by the reaction of my brothers, it was a pretty big deal.

Lots of year and lots of tit experiences have come and gone since then. We women learned as children that they were pretty cool and we could flaunt them to get remarkable and often pleasing reactions.

Not long ago I was wanting to look my best for an important function.  I had a dress made especially for the event.  "Go get fitted for a real bra," were my instructions from the dress designer.  So I went to Nordstroms and  spent hours being fitted for the perfect look.  I was so convinced that these bras
would make me beautiful, that I bought 3 of them and spent nearly $400.  They are painful to wear and I don't think I'm any more or less  beautiful with or without them.  Point is, tits are problematic.

And now, I'm at the most problematic point I've been in all my tit time.  I have cancer of the tits.  I suppose I should be more politically correct and say, I have breast cancer, but that seems to give them too much importance.

I'm at a place where I may soon choose to no longer have breasts, and I have to decide how I feel about that.  I stand in front of the mirror and say to myself, "not bad, even for an old lady like me," while at the same time imagining how I will look without them.

Self image is critically important. For the young girl sitting across the table from her brothers, self image was everything, and breasts were the magic pill to wonderfulness.  As a woman who has lived with those things since those early days of budding, I know there were times when losing them would have been a crisis.

Now, it doesn't seem important.  I  so wish to not have to go through all the mess and pain and inconvenience that my breast cancer poses, but whether I have tits to put into my uncomfortable $100 bras or not is not the issue for me now.  My issue is Rowan.  Rowan and the great grand kids and all the grand kids.  They sure won't care if I have tits.  They just want to have my music and joy, my laughter and games.  They want me healthy and happy.  I want that too.

I've put my tits in the hands of both God and my surgeon.  And I will move forward with music and joy and laughter long after their hands have done their duty.  Cancer be gone in whatever form that needs to be.  

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Farewell, Dear Friends

As much as I've loved you, and as helpful as you've been to me, I'm going to leave you.  I hate to write this, because then I have to act, but I am, I am going to leave you behind.  And you've been so comforting.  Brandy and Potato Chips.  My close friends for many years.  My nightly partners in grief and survival.  My lover substitutes, my sensual joys.  I'm leaving you behind, because I have a new battle to fight and you are not the tools I need for this battle.

You probably didn't cause it, but my body has taken on a new challenge, breast cancer, and my old friends, Brandy and Potato Chips just have to go.  I'm just getting a grip of it's reality as it comes in waves, but somehow I am now in a new place where taking charge has a whole new meaning for me.
All the things that I know are good for me, and all the things that I know are not good for me are swimming around in my head, and the only thing I hear is, duh.  Seriously, duh.  So it's time to take care of me.

Breast Cancer.  Well that really sucks.  But, oh, well, it could be a head on collision when I have no choices and no chances.  So this ride will be full of amazement for sure, but what it won't be full of is Brandy and Potato Chips.  Ready, Set, Go.  I sure don't want to ride this ride, but I'm on it, so I might as well ride it with a clear mind and grease-less fingers.  What lies ahead has only one assurance, that I will be lifted up daily by my family and my faith.