I went to a concert last Saturday. Somehow, MWR (Morale, Welfare, & Recreation, feeders of the military souls) and FreedomLive got Blues Traveler and 3 Doors Down to come allllllllllll the way down to our little corner of Out-In-The-Middle-Of-Nowhere. Both acts were absolutely awesome and gave their best shows to a much smaller crowd than I’m sure they’re used to playing to, but that’s not the point of this blog.
Three or four songs into their set, 3 Doors Down played Away From the Sun. I love 3 Doors Down and I’ve been a fan since the 90’s, but for some reason when I heard the line “I’ve got to make this life make sense”, I knew it would end up in another blog. I always write a lot more when I’m going through something, and in this case, I’m blogging my way through treatment for a rare, inoperable brain tumor. As my friend put it (perfectly, I might add!) “Keep writing. Keep posting. And keep allowing you to be the center of everyone’s universe for a while, until this “next thing” is the “remember that thing?” “.
When I first read that, all I could think is “I don’t know how to do that”. Not the writing and posting part, because as a writer words are as much a part of me as my legs, but the being the center of someone’s universe part. I’m a mom of 3 kids and 2 kitties and a wife to a man that just retired a year ago from 24 years of active duty. I’ve spent my entire adult life making someone else the center of my universe. How do I flip that around?
But I do know I need to tell my story. And I know I need to make sense out of everything that’s going on right now. Immersed in a place that doesn’t make sense. A place that feels dark and alone sometimes. All of this has to have some good come from it.
This isn’t the first time I’ve been in a place that’s dark and scary. But the difference between that and this is I have learned to find the words, to share the story, to give light to my fears and drag them out when they can be seen and hopefully recognized by someone that needs to know that they are not alone, that someone else has been to that place and survived it. I cannot be in pain or have fear without having some good come of it.
My hope is that I will spend more time than I have used suffering to give a voice to someone that needs to know they’re not the only one feeling the way they do or I have. My suffering, my fear, my pain can not be for nothing. I have found my self so far down, away from the sun, the light, sometimes even hope. And as I climb back out and try to make some good come of it all, I need to know that my darkness has not been for something. I hope my words can provide some kind of life raft for someone so that they don’t have to go as far down as I did.
I don’t know how well I have processed the brain tumor thing yet. I know I’ve written plenty about it, but it’s still hard to close my eyes and really accept the reality that after everything else I have survived I have a new fight ahead of me. I go in tomorrow for the pre-treatment MRI and CT, otherwise known as the aiming session and treatment planning meeting, and a week from today I start radiation therapy.
It doesn’t make sense. It’s just all so absurd and unbelievable. So I’m trying to make this life make sense.