I paid as much mind to my hair and face as I had to the wounds I had been dressing, performing rituals of grooming I had nearly forgotten. My heart swelled, and after a year of cellular and spiritual purging, I suddenly felt full.
Today, June 2, is National Cancer Survivors Day. For Karen Shayne and Judy Pearson, co-founders of the Women Survivors Alliance, it is also an opportunity to galvanize others to their 365 days-a-year mission.
Some days you need a serious chat. Some days you need a friend to be silly with. Some days you need a friend to go shopping and have a gossip session with and try to put cancer in the back seat for a few hours. There are many ways to be supportive.
Cancer treatment for women has become another example of a "product" that can be "marketed" to women based not on a presentation of scientific data, but on "softer" points such as "concierge service" and even hospital landscaping.
Creating an online dating profile is awkward. Creating one when you have cancer? That is just another level of strange. And I almost did not go at the last second, when my nerves, and probably my grasp on reality, took hold of me.
I am writing from the final throes of age 29, a narrowing corridor of weeks until I embark upon my 30s. But for some of us, 'survival' of this particular decade is jarringly literal. I am a cancer survivor.