Thursday, January 6, 2011

New Year Brings New Language by Dani

Dani and her daughter at the 2010 Light The Night Walk
Last year’s language was the jargon of doctors and hospitals. Even the joy of discovering we were once again pregnant was overshadowed by the fear of whether or not my body would be capable of handling the stress. Last year’s language was that of a soldier in the trenches; attempting to lighten the situation by looking up and saying “well at least the sun is out.” My words of last year were my saving grace that created a language that brought me catharsis and human connection.

I am grateful that we have the opportunity to change our voice and create new words, new language, and new life. I look towards this year so differently than I did the last. Last year I was scared of what stood before me. Our future was uncertain. This year I have no more answers than I did last year; nor guarantees of anything. What we have is hope, faith and a little good news to set us on our path.

As the New Year rolled in I was overwhelmed by emotion. I looked to my future and I saw my husband and I growing old together, two little children playing with one another, family dinners, date nights where Mike and I try not to talk about some cute thing the kids did but just cannot seem to refrain, scrapped knees, first bikes, broken bones, broken hearts, family pets, bedtime stories, family vacations, “five more minutes,” road trips, kindergarten, grade school, high school, college visits, caps and gowns, weddings and more babies. I looked to my future and I saw my loving husband by my side, my beautiful children, my family, my friends. I saw hope and joy. I did not see cancer. Over the last year and a half, I often wondered if there would ever be a time when cancer was not a thread that wove its way through my every thought. The moment finally came.

I am sure that in the months and years to come, as PET scans and blood tests are due, there will be a breath of fear that grazes my cheek like a soft breeze. However, in this moment I was not only cancer free but free of cancer. They say it takes the body a year to recover from chemotherapy. They do not pontificate on the time it takes one’s brain or soul to recover from the experience of cancer. This hope for the future was my first real indication the healing has truly begun. The fortuitous thoughts coupled with prenatal hormones were too much for one healing soul to bear and I laughed as the warm tears streamed down my cheeks. Entering the New Year with tears of joy; I can think of no better language.

Happy New Year to you all and I hope your 2011 is filled with the language of love, peace and laughter, thank you for your continued support and love.

Dani, a non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma survivor, was the 2010 Summer triathlon team Honored Hero. Thank you for sharing with us Dani. You are our inspiration!

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