Thank G-d during this round I entered the battlefield with tightly fitting armor, grenades and secret weapons. My ammunition seems to have been quite the match for Cancer's venom. Miraculously I am recovering quite peacefully and without much pain.
When I left Prentice Hospital on Tuesday night, all I wanted to do was hug the air, breathe in the smell of spring, and embrace life.
As we left the hospital my senses were on overload. I felt as if I had hawkish instincts- smells were stronger, the air was thicker, and Michigan Avenue was officially in hypercolor!
I felt like I was in a dream- a blissful one at that.
On the drive home, I opened the windows and let the air envelope me. I couldn't get the air into my lungs fast enough. As I breathed in and out, I found myself unable to speak.
My dad and I drove in relative silence. Both of us were in our own inner orbits, trying to make sense of what just happened, and somehow prepare for what was to come.
During my last visit home, my parents and I spent a lot of time staring at each other. While I was experiencing tremendous discomfort, my parents were desperately trying to figure out how to take the pain away.
In the last round, I spent 2 days sinking into my bed- deeper and deeper-unsure if I would actually get out. During that time, my parents quietly watched me- hoping and praying that I would reemerge and give them a sign that I was still here.
3 days after my release from Prentice, I eventually did come out of this scary and dark place- and when I came out- I came out screaming.
I have been thinking a lot lately about how Cancer can rob you of your voice.
When you are in the hospital, you have little say over your own body, and as each day passes, your ability to speak up becomes increasingly difficult. My typical loud and vibrant voice somehow becomes stifled in this environment, and further quieted upon my return home.
Some of my friends and family have even commented on how my actual voice sounds different throughout the fighting and recovery process.
How do I find my voice, hold on to it, and eventually reclaim it?
Is there a way to fight the silence without making a sound?
There will be moments in this fight where I won't be able to talk- but I will be communicating. There will be moments in this fight where I may seem quiet, but I am really screaming.
For those of you watching, reading, supporting from afar- I hope you hear me.