Thursday, January 21, 2010

Cancer changes things

That was not meant to be any kind of profound statement requiring you to say 'well, doh!' I have been thinking about my last two posts over the past two days and rereading them. I think the background from both of those posts is really that I had cancer, some people treat me differently and I don't really like that so I have learned not to let that stress me out. Also as a result of cancer, is that it has made me treasure some relationships more than others. I have learned to re-prioritize. Did I want to rule the world before cancer? Well, maybe but that was a really long time ago.

After my first diagnosis, I felt I had a chance to do what I wanted with my life. And I did. I dated. I met my husband. I had a career. I worked full time, and more. I traveled on business a lot. I commuted long hours. I put up with a lot of crap. It was called life.

Then in 2005, after getting married, my health began the beginning of a series of all sorts of medical adventures starting with a hysterectomy and, a year a half later, in 2007, my second cancer diagnosis. I no longer had the desire the rule the world, or even a small department. I wanted time to be me. I don't want to work full time because I want to be able to spend time with my husband, volunteer work, cat, garden, cooking, and the fun things in life. But I also can't work full time because I still need to schedule too many damn doctor appointments.

But these medical (mis-)adventures also served as a wake up call to the big question of 'what do I want to do when I grow up?' (I used to ask that question of potential employees when interviewing to see how they could think on their feet and put together a coherent answer.) But I don't think anyone really does know what they want to do. You know what you hope to do but will have to get there through the little detours life hands out.

Because of cancer, I have changed many things in my life. I no longer have an overwhelming urge to commute long distances to work. I would be happy never to go on another business trip. I don't feel the need to deal with nitwits, and other difficult people. I also aren't going their ignorance or personal issues stress me out. I am going to do my own thing and ignore them. I will be happy with the friends I have but am not going to adopt their issues as mine.

Cancer has made me value relationships that I have and not let me regret the ones I need to ignore.

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