I celebrated my birthday on January 11. Today, January 13, is the anniversary of the day I started chemotherapy a year ago. Thinking back to last year, on my birthday, I was honestly just so thrilled to be alive. I proudly told everyone that I had made it to 45. We celebrated and had a great day, but when January 12th/13th rolled around, I was truly terrified. I wondered what the next six months of treatments would bring for me.
This year, there is no terror or fear. I am happy to be here, but no longer worried about what tomorrow may bring. Of course, there is that tiny bit of me that worries about the cancer coming back, but that is no longer a predominant fear in my every day life.
My birthday weekend this year was a celebration of the “normal”.
Perhaps one of the most exciting moments of the weekend for me was having one of my heroes in life and running say that she will come help crew and pace me at Bryce. I will write more about that in the future as our plans come together, but I went from feeling very stressed about this race to be head over heels with excitement! With my new found sense of excitement and purpose, I went for a 17 mile run in the hills with my husband.
I came home and had cake and got some gifts from my family. My favorite gifts were the letter from Riley. I will not disclose the contents except to say that she made me tear up in a good way. Here is a cute picture she drew at the bottom. I love that kid!
Peyton made me another one of her fabulous cards.
The inside had pictures of things I love.
We watched Peyton compete in a karate match.
I worked a few hours and attended a Girl Scout troop meeting with the kids.
It was the simple, quiet celebration of normal life that brings me the most joy.
I woke up today thinking about the responsibilities of my day-to-day life. I am relieved that these are the things that are now occupying the space in my head, rather than living with the daily fear of what cancer or chemotherapy may do to my body. But I have several friends who are still engaged in the battle for their lives. My birthday wish is for those friends to be able to regain their health and to have their lives return to something as close to normal as possible. Their fight is my fight and they are always in my heart.