caregiving · Grief · Pain · Purpose · Relationships · RN · Self-care

Nothing is Permanent…

It has been a little over 3 weeks since my procedure. The good news is that my concerns over the loss of function, the size of the excision and the unknown elements of recovery were considerably less than anticipated and with that I am relieved and grateful. I needed this gratitude as I endured 2 days of back to back procedures and 4 days of uncontrolled pain all in the pursuit of removing a cancer that is taking residence in my body. I write this to say that in the vein of all the challenges of life, this was a short hill I felt I had to climb in the pursuit of health, wellness and sanity. I write this to say that I will face this climb again in the years to come, but I might choose a different path based upon what I learned. Nothing is permanent…

My skin graft continues to be painful. It’s appearance changes day to day. I am self-conscious about this and use my hair and a hat to keep my ear from the view of others. As I sat and watched a movie with my niece the other evening, I needed to pull my hair back off of my ear as the pangs of regenerating nerves and re-establishing circulation were beginning to wear on me. She glanced over. My insecurities lead me to believe that she was looking at my ear, which she wasn’t and then because I was working to cover it back up, she asked if she could look at it. I pulled my hair back, her eyes became teary and I immediately reassured her, “It doesnt’ hurt”, which was a lie, but it is the lengths I go to, to make everything OK, to reassure others and provide the appearance of normlacy. She responded, “It makes me sad Auntie.” Her response was one of concern and authentic sweetness and I echoed her feelings silently, “It makes me sad too.” Nothing is permanent. We went back to watching the movie and moment had moved on.

As I look back on the different chapters of my life, there are events that seem like a lifetime ago, moments that I never thought I would endure or those that I thought I would never forget, relationships I thought would last forever and friendships that were false. Every chapter is meant to teach and provide a footprint for future chapters. This current footprint is still fresh, but I have realized, that this will fade too and my only focus is continuing to put one foot in the front of the other and exercising gratitude for each step.

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