In thinking about this, it probably doesn't vary much from what we deal with when others make judgments about us, cancer or no cancer.
I think it still bothers me more in some regard, though, because when you need help from another that is the time what another thinks of you is going to matter the most.
And most of us know another person who does not like us for some reason is likely to be unlikely to extend a helping hand - unless there is, at the core, a level of love and concern (or dysfunction?) that speaks louder than the dislike.
I am feeling very judgmental right now. Chemo has a way of bringing up all kinds of negative stuff. So much crap is going through my head.
I am sad and angry about those who judge me by what they think they know. And, yet, I am probably at times just as guilty.
If someone needed help, though, I would like to think I could somehow get passed my stuff, and help if I thought I could.
I realize that in some level we are all doing the best we can with what we got. But is this really good enough? Should it be good enough? Should we be ok with it?
How I am should not matter to you, in the same way that how you are should not matter to me. And yet, we co-exist in this world, so how can the line drawn be that cut and dry?
Maybe it isn't so much what we think, as much as what we do with what we think. There is a commercial I saw about battling parents. Everyone has an opinion, and many of them vary. It is one big mess, until a baby carriage gets loose, and all of the parents go after it.
The message is that "we" are parents first, which comes before/above our judgments.
It is at times like this that I am more acutely aware of the judgments of others. It is a time like this I feel more isolated. Chemo has never been my friend when it comes to how I feel mentally.
In such a short time, my attitude has taken a considerable dive. I am not liking this one bit.
I also realize that talking this way is only likely to alienate others. I backed away from being immediately public the last time I was on chemo, and in some ways, I think it might have been a good idea.
The rawness and immediacy of emotions - as real as they are - can often be hard to deal with. As it is, many already do not know what to say to me.
At times like this I don't want to be bothered by anyone or anything. If I could, I'd bury myself in a corner, and not come out.
I have a hard time coping with things as it is, but it is greatly amplified when I feel as I do. And it is NOT a conscious choice to feel this way.
I had been adamant that I did not want to do more chemo, as it has taken me from myself. What kind of life do I have if I am miserable?
It is very sad for me to make a choice like chemo when I feel as alone as I do. What is the point of living when I do not feel like I am living?
It gets really hard to see people doing stuff, feeling like my life is stagnant. It is no different than when I am off chemo, but the "reality" is starker when I am on it.
It doesn't help me that I am sleeping most of the time and/or not feeling well. It doesn't help that I do one or two things, and then have to lay down. It doesn't help that I don't think those closest to me want to hear about it, either.
On some level, I think they just want everything to be alright. I don't know if it is "true," but reactions I have gotten have certainly not encouraged me to feel free to express what I am feeling/what is going on.
I need that expression, and the only place I somewhat feel safe to express these feelings is here. However, for reasons mentioned above, it is a bit questionable.
I have continued to share publicly as it has felt important. Believe me when I say I soooo would much rather be quiet, private.
I can only guess from reactions I receive from people that I have been in some way helpful by being so raw and honest, and that is the reason why I continue to be as forthcoming.
If I have a mission in life at this moment in time, I feel like it relates to my ability and willingness to speak my truth - regardless of how it will be received, or whether it will even be received.
Do I want to torture myself in such a public forum, in such a public way? No freaking way.
I do not know what will come next, but if I get quiet again, at least this post might give some insight as to why.
A friend told me people want "cancer heroes." They want people who smile, are positive, are cheerleaders, who act like all is right with the world, and that they will fight - and conquer - cancer. They want the stories of those "on the other side," free from cancer.
People don't want to hear about the problems. They don't want to hear anout the medical bills, the utility turn-offs, the evictions. They don't want to hear about the tears. They don't want to hear about the fears. They don't want to hear about the nightmare trip through dealing with cancer and treatment, they just want to hear that you made it. You made it? Good. Great. Let's eat.
It does a great number of people a disservice to have this mentality. One may think it is somehow a "good" thing to stay positive. I have spoken to some who are only "positive" because others need and expect it, and that it comes at a great personal cost.
I can't do it. I won't do it. I promised myself if I blogged it would be everything...good, bad, ugly. And I am keeping my promise.
Some people may think I am withholding the good because there may not seem to be much of it. Deal with cancer and treatment mostly alone and see just how much positive there is/how much positive you see.
There is some, and I have shared it. I am just not gonna try to fake anything at this point. It will cost me a lot more than it is worth.
When you start seeing the value in speaking things as they are, you will never want to go back, either.
Yup. Sometimes it really does suck to be human. And this is one of those times.
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