Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Get Thee Behind Me, Tetanus

Today was Vaccinations #2 Day: Hib, Diphtheria, Pertussis, Tetanus and pneumoccocus somethingorother. These ones hurt waay more than the last ones, if you can't tell from my perplexed expression:

I'm now off to conquer AM radio. That's right folks. In my quest to become the Empress of Cause-Based Media, I'm doing an interview for the upcoming Jimmy Fund telethon on WEEI. I thought, "Cool, it's for radio." Turns out it's also being taped for the big screen at Fenway Park. Okaaay. Had I known that looks would count, I would have made my blue rinse and blow-out appointment long before now. So it will be what it will be: my funky hair, moon face and me. My donor will also be there, so it will be great to see her again without the pressure of a public luncheon breathing down our necks.

Speaking of breathing down my neck (or not), my next Dana Farber appointment isn't for 3 months! How insane is that?! I sat there today, eating my corn muffin from Dunkin Donuts and drinking my decaf tea, watching a woman in a bandanna eating a pop tart gingerly while lifting her mask. It really smacked me in the face that I was that woman not so long ago. It made me feel for her, knowing how much suckage that is. But it also made me want to get out of there; to escape the constant reminders of how sick I was and felt. How nice is that?

I'm definitely still in the post-transplant process, will still be immune-suppressed for probably another year, won't ever really be able to say "no worries!" even if just for psychological reasons. But I really just want to get beyond being the Sick Girl and get back to being Just E. I remember a few years after Gilda Radner's death Gene Wilder (her husband) finally announced that he was "cancered out" and didn't want to do all these interviews about Gilda anymore. That's kind of how I feel at this point. Not about the interviews, because that's actually where I see me being able to do some life-affirming, positive work that removes me from the large pool of Sick People. But just in having my life more or less revolve around my health; I'm kind of over it. I'm "aplasticked out." So much of the past few years has been devoted to my diagnosis, then my failing health, then my oh-my-god-I'm-f*cked health, then my transplant, then my recovery, then my GVH; and I'm just kind of done giving anymore time to a disease I no longer have. I want to move beyond. Which is not to say that my GVH isn't still bugging me, and that I don't have daily stuff to deal with on the health front (Who doesn't?! I'm special?). But just that it's something I want to incorporate into my life and live around, rather than having it be the sole focus.

I guess what I'm saying is this: it's absolutely a miracle that I'm alive, and the best way I can think of to show gratitude for that fact is to really, truly live. Not under the cloud of disease, not under fear that the bottom is going to fall out, not with a constant eye to the challenges of the past.

Or, put another way, the best way I can thank my donor for her gift is to use that gift wisely.

1 comment:

Vigilante said...

Awesome, E!