Twenty four years ago plus or minus a month or two, I was in labor with my first child. It wasn't until I was in labor that I realized, "I can't back out of this. I can't quit just because it hurts too much. I have to see it all the way through no matter what I want to do." After 23 hours of labor and no epidural or spinal, I finally gave birth to a 7lb baby girl. At first I couldn't even bear to look at her because it had hurt so much for so long. But when I did, the magic started.
That was my first major ride on the roller coaster, where I was teed up at the top--looking at the yawning abyss below, without a clue as to what was going to happen next, and without any semblance of control.
I am back there tonight, waiting for the biopsy tomorrow and the results and the treatments and the reactions, and, and, and. Only this time, that baby girl is with me and she's telling me things she's learned in medical school, where's she's just started her third year. And we laugh and carry on but a lot of that knowledge is not easy to hear. Things like, I probably have either stage 3 or stage 4 cancer, depending on where the primary situs of the cancer is. And there are only 4 stages. And if the primary site is in another organ, that is a stage 4. But if the primary site is in the lungs, that's a stage 3 but it could have metastasized to another blood rich organ, particularly the brain.
So once again I am teetering on the top of the roller coaster, looking at the darkness below, absolutely terrified, and not knowing what bright birth this portends.