Thursday, March 27, 2008

The body as a (pretty battered) temple

Yesterday was a random day, health-wise. I got up and made it to school and all was fine. Later, though, when I returned to hand in an assignment I had the craziest dizzy spell; the world lurched unpleasantly as did my stomach. I got home and all the chores and tasks I'd planned went out the window as fatigue set in. (Preggers? God, I hope not...) My chest wheezed and my cough was back. I feared the return of whatever has been plaguing me all winter, but a good sleep seems to have chased it off, although a day at the Kids' Only market hasn't done much to help. The more time I spend there the more I loathe it. It's not that I dislike kids, at least not as individuals. But as a horde...(insert shudder here.) Screeching, whining, messing up my puppets over and over and over again. Just being their charming little selves, grrr.

I've been thinking a lot about health and the ways our bodies can let us down these last few weeks. How I-never-thought-it'd-happen-to-me turns into what-if turns into oh-god-no if we're not lucky. My stepmom's cancer is getting worse. Tumors in her lungs are growing, and she's starting to have trouble breathing. A new tumor in the muscles around her spine. My brother's wedding in Mexico, which she was putting off chemo to attend, is now out of reach for her, which seems doubly cruel as she is one of our few family members who would really appreciate all the things that go into a wedding. She and my dad sound surprisingly upbeat when we speak on the phone and I marvel at their strength, their refusal to admit defeat, at least most of the time. Let me know the minute you need me to come up there, I say. There is nothing, nothing that can't be put off if need be. Illness doesn't pick its moments to suit us, of course, and family trumps everything else but still. Angry at myself for agonizing secretly about what I'd be sacrificing if I had to put off work, school. I feel as if we're all standing on a precipice that could crumble under our feet at any time. This is not really my pain yet except sporadically; it's still far away in Kelowna, but soon the edge will give way and we'll all be dragged in to my dad and stepmom's pain and oh god we've never had to deal with anything like this in our family and who is ever ready for something like this? All the more surreal when contrasted with my work life, which is going great, or my life with J, which is lovely.

Weddings and cancer, love and travel, music and retail- the highs and lows that make up my spring so far.

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