It happened. Last week I fell. Hard. Metaphorically speaking, some might say, I hit rock bottom. The week leading up to treatment I was feeling quite nervous and apprehensive; I was afraid chemo was going to be more difficult. Yet, despite my fear I tried to stay strong. Then last Monday evening – between day 1 & day 2 of treatment – I lost it. I sobbed and sobbed. Sitting in my puddle of tears I felt scared, alone, and incredibly vulnerable. I wanted it all to be over or different; I wanted something other than what was. And yet, while It felt uncomfortable, it was also necessary: sometimes we need to fall down, or feel raw to our core, in order to get back up again.
Undeniably sitting amidst sorrow and despair was difficult. In many ways it was a call for help. Yet in that moment, rather than receiving help from others, I needed to help myself. I had to muster up enough inner tenacity and courage to say to myself: “It’s ok. It’s ok to be sad and afraid. You are strong; you can do this. You are ok.” And since, with the support of professionals, friends, and family, I’ve also made a commitment to prioritize my own health and well-being. It is time for me to take care of me.
And so, while this round of chemo has been more physically challenging, I also feel a little bit lighter. For the first time in a long while, I’m exercising self-care, compassion, and love. Sometimes when we fall down, we need to get back up, yet we also need to gentle with ourselves to find the courage and strength to do so.