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I had avoided scanning the Internet for horror stories since I had made the decision to ‘go for the burn,’ but the well-intentioned tech had scared the nightlights outta me! If my precious breast actually ‘broke down’ would it fall apart, droop, collapse, melt, disappear altogether? Would it ever be the same pert little mound again? Of course, I spent several hours digging into cancer websites, and the most informative told me that indeed, a radiated breast could actually change size, and that “toward the end of treatment, the skin may become moist and weepy.” Egads. I prayed that I wouldn’t experience this horrendous type of cell breakdown and counted the rest of my treatments like I used to count the days until the Beatles came to town. I was also starting to experience the heavy fatigue that came with the process, and took long, lovely, rejuvenating naps after my treatments, staggering around afterward like I was stoned.

It certainly helped my mood when almost every single one of my treasured girlfriends turned up in their jammies the night I got to blow out another year of birthday candles. Getting the Big C makes you ever so grateful for every breath you take, every move you make… There was so much love in my colorful little beach cottage that the air shimmered with it. My darling Goddaughter, Polly Parsons, called the dolls into the back garden, and under the bright moon, they encircled me, holding hands while she made entreaties to the Heavens for my good health. It felt amazing; I was lifted up by their heartfelt beseeching on my behalf.

I hadn’t seen one of these girls in a few years, and had missed her terribly, but when she learned I had breast cancer, she turned up at my door that night. I have a long history with Melanie Griffith. We met when she was barely fourteen, and her beguiling innocence entranced my boyfriend Don Johnson away from me. I was devastated, but my hippie heart couldn’t bear to lose either one of them. Years later, I was their maid-of-honor when they married for the second time.

On my birthday night, she brought me a divine silk comforter and a sexy Anna Sui negligee, affirming that I’d still look hot in skimpy lace after all was said and done. It was lovely to see her again. My boyfriend Mike had written me a love song and recorded it for my birthday. I played ‘Counting My Lucky Stars,’ for my sweet girls and they swooned along with me to the heartfelt lyrics: “I rush to meet her now/We found each other somehow/Counting my lucky stars tonight/Lying in loving arms and it feels alright…” Sigh. Mike stayed so positive and adoring throughout the entire experience that at times, looking into his eyes, I actually forgot I had been stricken.

The rays continued unabated, and by the final week, I could barely touch my tittie, and could tolerate only the sheerest, softest cloth. I had made the decision, however, that no matter how it all went down, I would remain optimistic. I continued sweet-talking my body, reminding it that we had already been through the worst, encouraging my skin to stay intact and not to get moist and weepy (shudder) for a few more rounds. A couple of the ladies I saw daily had started smiling back at me, and after my last appointment (it felt like graduation day, I even got a diploma!) I happily passed my copious tubes of Aloe Vera gels and vitamin E creams onto them.

My breast did not get moist, I am thrilled to report, nor did it change size during the treatments. It was very sunburned, like I had gone skinny dipping under 105 degree sunshine for a year, but after it peeled, the skin underneath felt like a baby’s velvet bottom. My right tittie is a bit smaller than the other, due to the removal of intruding cancer cells and surrounding tissue, but I am so grateful to still have the blessed thing on my body that I shout out Thanks! every single day.

Although I believe anybody can get this disease, I started pondering how I might have contributed to its arrival. I had long looked to metaphysical teacher Louise Hay regarding why we experience particular health issues. At the website, Lightworks.com, I found a letter Ms. Hay wrote to a breast cancer survivor: “I often find that cancer is related to long-standing resentments and deep hurt. Women who experience breast cancer are often care-givers who have spent their whole lives nurturing others, but do not nurture themselves. Their identities are often wrapped up in those of their husbands and children. If you see that you have tendencies for nurturing everyone but yourself, begin to work on this now.” Hmmm. It was time for inspection and reflection.

To Be Continued……….

If anyone reading this has anything she wants to say to Pamela, or share with us, please e-mail us at postmaster@dishmag.com

www.Dishmag.com / Issue 56 - September 2737
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