Sunday, December 14, 2008


I just finished my graduate school essays. My personal history statement about how cancer has changed the way I feel about my life was the most difficult to write. In the end, I ended up distilling the experience into the three biggest ideas: that I realized I harbor a positive attitude at the root of my personality, that I have new appreciation for what hope is, and that I am infinitely grateful for my investment in community.

I thought my grateful attitude was a new thing brought about by cancer, but I just found this great journal entry from November 22, 2007:

“There are so many more amazing things to come. The last few years have introduced almost exclusively wonderful things into my life and yet I still struggle with their impermanence. Living in abundance—a paradigm that I love and that is not finite seems more and more appropriate.

Things that are abundant:
Love—the love of my friends
The possibility that something good will happen

Who is to say that Nathan, my favorite jeans, my friends in PDX, my professional life, the production of good music… there is no end to crushes, creativity, and my own potential. I’m thankful for Wilco, my health, my friends, and my family. There is always more.”

Sometimes I look at shit like this and shake my head. Am I seriously that girl? I think that yes, I am. It’s ridiculous.

Anyway, I feel excellent right now. My application is complete, it’s 4pm and I’m still in my pajamas, Phil Collins is playing, we have a 90% chance at a great new roommate, my sister comes tomorrow, it’s Christmas time, I just found this fantastic journal that I forgot I started last November before I got sick…

If you’re wondering how I am, I’m good. I work all the time now. I’m tired all the time. I am getting fat because it’s Christmas and I am eating a ton of sugar and my digestive system is functioning properly and helping me absorb thousands of bad calories. I made 12 rum cakes the other day. I still can’t feel my toes. I can do a half moon in yoga without putting my hand on a block…

I will continue to update on occasion, but for all you cancer blog fans out there, the best of it is Feb-August 2008. Cancer is really short. We were talking about that the other month in my LLS group—that treatment feels like forever, but really, it’s a remarkably short span of time for most folks. It doesn’t mean I don’t grapple with cancer-related issues every day (like health insurance for grad school! Blah!) but I think it’s probably significantly less interesting.