That’s a crazy statement, right? I know more than I know.
But it’s true.
I woke up a week ago feeling anxious.
“What is this about?” I wondered. ”Nothing bad has happened. Things have been going well.”
Then the realization hit me.
I’m at the second anniversary of my finding a lump in my breast. I found it the Wednesday evening before Labor Day, got the biopsy that Friday, and had to wait through the three-day weekend to get the results. I remember getting the news that I had breast cancer. It was that Tuesday after Labor Day. I remember sitting in my truck afterward thinking, “This is terrible and wonderful.” And it was. It was a difficult journey. But I made it through and came out the other side.
Of course, the two-year mark means a mammogram coming up (in two weeks). So I have the anxiety of wondering what that will find. My feeling is that I’m cancer-free, but I don’t completely trust that until the test results come in. I still have a seroma, though now it’s hard and probably not drainable, and I wonder if I’ll need an MRI this time. That’s a source of a little low-level anxiety, too.
But mainly I felt anxiety last week because I know more than I know. I wasn’t consciously thinking of the anniversary, but my body and my psyche knew. I think we’re all like that. On some deep level we recall anniversaries – both good and bad – even if our conscious minds don’t. The angle of the sun, the temperatures, the seasonal activities – these all are markers, and our bodies and psyches respond to them to say, “Hey, remember when . . . “
To honor my anniversary and this significant marker in my life’s journey, I decided to look back through old journals. To acknowledge who I was and who I am now. I’ve kept a journal for at least a couple of decades. I looked back through the last nine years of my journaling. After reading some of the entries from 2004 and 2005 (a particularly hard time), I felt I was reading about a different person. I was somewhat the same, but I was very different in many ways. I can see that I’ve grown a great deal since then.
The cancer journey, another particularly hard time, pushed me through the most growth of all. I still can’t quite grasp al that I’ve learned in the past two years, but I feel different, like a new person in many ways. I’ve been writing lately about realignment and reframing, but I also need to add a new “re-” term.
I do feel that a part of me has died in the past couple of years and a new aspect of me is being born. Or was reborn that day in the labyrinth, and I’m now in the early part of a new life. I’m learning to crawl and then toddle around – as a new person.
So even though this weekend was one of memories of the beginning two years ago of a difficult time, it’s also a time of gratitude and rejoicing. I’m a healthy person surrounded by loving friends and family, blessed in more ways than I can name.
I’m on a life’s journey of growth and pruning and regrowth – just as everyone else is, too.
And we’re all wise, much wiser than we know. We all know more than we know.
And that’s a blessing. For each of us.