Today I am lighter. The invisible brick that has been sitting on my shoulder for the past two years suddenly turned to dust, and with the first gust of wind was blown away down the avenue, to mix and mingle with all of the other dust on the ledges of windows and in the corners of alleys, becoming just another old remnant of another old story of a citizen of the city.
The story it tells will be one of fear, one of unease. It's a story that began with a routine test when I was pregnant with Biet, and ended with a test result that I read today. And in the middle were hospital appointments, procedures, biopsies, doctors advising us to consider how many children we wanted to have, saying the sooner the better was in our best interest, and the unending fear of the worst case scenario: the c word. I could have come face to face with that word today. I tried for months and months not to think about it. Then Lucien was born and testing resumed, and today I opened the results. And instead of that dreaded word, I read the one word that I had truly not expected: negative. Completely negative. My body had healed.
Fear has a funny way of manifesting itself in the most unexpected ways. I realize now that this rut that I've been in and out of for quite some time, of not being able to completely throw myself into my projects and my art as I'd like to, probably has nothing to do with being uninspired, and everything to do with being scared. I've been living with this silent fear for over two years, dreading the worst. I tried so hard to push it out of my mind. But every morning when we made a fresh juice, I couldn't help but throw in an extra handful of kale for its anti-cancer properties, and then my mind would reel. I would think about what it must have been like for my mother when, upon going in for her third cesarian, they found multiple tumors spread throughout her body. She never got to see her babies grow up, and we never got to know her. I would tell myself, "that was her story and this is mine," but that invisible brick of fear remained on my shoulder, night and day.
Until today. Today I am lighter. Today I am free.
I have my babies, and they have me. And I completely and wholly have my health. And now, with unending gratitude, I will go on to write my story.