sometimes it's so hard i want to cry or stop. I remember when i first started exercising post treatment, if i had to do something that was challenging to my chest area, like planks or presses, i would feel super sorry for myself, and think, holding back tears "i'll never be the same again" - now, as i get stronger and healthier, i think "fuck yeah, thank god i'll never be the same again" - i'm different and better for it and the lessons.
I know what it takes to push through, i know about focus and vision. But i've had to develop some new ones of late.
Sometimes we do these exercises called Sandbell Slams, where we pick up a weighted sand bag thing, raise it over head, stand on tippy toes, and SLAM it down on the ground with a squat. Our trainers sometimes tell us to "break the floor" with that thing. When i slam it down, sometimes these are the thoughts i have to really really slam. "fuck you cancer", "fuck you tamoxifen", "fuck you single parenting" and all things that have threatened to make my life harder. I don't really get angry at all the stuff but it sure feels good to say that shit now and then. Sometimes when we are doing Mountain Climbers, my most dreaded, thanks to it being a plank type move, all i can focus on was how this is NOTHING compared to recovering from a mastectomy, or walking around the block during chemo, and that of course i can do this heinous move for 15 more seconds.
These thoughts were swirling in my head this morning, when i came upon a blog entry by a fellow survivor, a gorgeous woman with stage four, currently dealing with brain mets and daily brain radiation. She wrote about the trade offs, how when you first learn you must have something dreadful done to you, it's unbearable, unthinkable and devastating and not dealable, then you come to realize, that it's nothing but a thing, a trade off, a trade off for LIFE and not just life but QUALITY LIFE. Body parts,hair, discomfort, - all for time with kids, family, pleasures, experinces...worth it.
Think about it, life is all trade offs, we all have them, you go to work for 8 hours a day - you have money for living. You miss a show of your fave band, you get to spend time with your kids. you get it. it's a daily thing
I go to the gym and sweat and push myself for an hour, i get strong, healthy, mental clarity, self esteem, badass muscles, community, friendship - definitely worth it.
And knowing how lucky i am, to be on this side of the battle and doing this -
the gratitude i feel is almost overwhelming