I wasn’t able to post this weekend. So you’re welcome. I am sure everyone likes a break from the monotony of my fragmented prose and sporadic poetics.
My weekend was full to the brim, but not in the optimistic sense. I was literally in constant motion–which entailed nearly six full hours of driving, five of which were anxiety free–thank goodness for country roads and Xanax.
The bulk of my busy was dedicated to renovating a small trailer, which was previously used as a mobile dentist’s office. We needed the building to not only be habitable housing, but a home for the sister of one of my best friends.
They recently discovered she has cancer; five tumors are spread throughout her body–3 of which are strategically placed on her reproductive organs.
As we painted walls, cut trim, laid carpet and wood flooring, I watched her sister’s slow movements with a heavy heart. Her stomach was bloated from the excess water which surrounded the tumors–water they couldn’t drain, for fear of aggravating the condition. She looked 6 months pregnant. I was baffled that her thin legs could support her body.
This encounter presented a plethora of anxieties in regards to my own reproductive health. Soon after my 31st birthday, I received and irregular Pap Screening and went through the whole rigmarole of the initial Colposcopy, Cone Biopsy and the final LEEP procedure to remove any pre-cancerous cells. What I didn’t expect was the overpowering smell of the burning skin, inside my body as it was cauterized. The pain was nothing: I’ve dealt with horrific cycles since I was 11 years old and the monthly stomach cramping, by far, exceeded any discomfort my Gyno inflicted in that office.
I am not attempting to compare the two as similar–in any regard, but there was so much that I envied about her life.
She was surrounded by at least a dozen family members who were there for her–to help her. With two sisters, their husbands and a brother all colluding to make her home feel like home, I saw their relationships were easy and spirited. And during this productive weekend, I had ample time to contemplate my own siblings in comparison.
My sisters and I just aren’t–exactly friends. I wish I could elaborate, but I can only assume my “black sheep”, non-mother, not married self, keeps us from having a true connection. Nothing was easy or spirited in my family, unless there are spirits involved.
After I left my Gyno, alone, I went home. Well, that which used to be my home with my ex and step-children; very much alone. I was in shambles. Not only was my relationship lacking any healthy progress, my partner didn’t seem to give a shit about my health. Through my experiences with an anxiety disorder, physical therapy and cancer trying to develop on my uterus, he never seemed to care.
Maybe he was a sociopath. Most likely it was the alcoholism.
I finally understood the severity of my voluntary isolation. I spent the following four months, slowly and strategically moving all my most valuable belongings out of our house.
If I was going to do this alone, I wasn’t going to play the “happy housewife” any longer.
The LEEP procedure happened a year ago. In the year since, I have been forced to revisited my reproductive truth: I am a 32 year old woman without children. My ex and I never contemplated having kids, I loved his with all my heart and expected to be their second mother for the rest of my life.
I’ve only seen them a few times over the last year.
I guess I’m no longer a mother.
At 37 years old, my friend’s sister is staring cancer in the face, with four of her own children at her side. They latch onto her like no one else in the room exists.
She won’t ever be alone.
But I sit here, at my new home with my three fur-babies, wondering if my lady parts even work; wondering why I’m just now contemplating my duty; wondering if I wasted the best years of my life.
But mostly, I wonder if I’ll always feel alone.
- If you have a moment to say a little prayer for my friend’s sister, it would mean the world to us.