I am the “bury your head in the sand” type. If I had to pick a movie character who best personifies my personal philosophy, it would be Scarlett O’Hara. I firmly believe in “I’ll think about that tomorrow.” I can’t stand making phone calls to various service providers or medical billing offices, so I tend to delay as much as humanly possible. However, what Dave’s diagnosis has done for me is give me the firm kick in the pants that I needed.
In order to prevent Dave from using unnecessary time and energy on things that I can handle, I have tried to take on most of the responsibilities around the house. In order to make it manageable, if something is not urgent, then it will get added to the list of things to do on Tuesdays and Fridays which are my days off from work. This satisfies both the procrastinator in me and the newly improved take charge version.
My voice is stronger than it has ever been. My tendency is to be relatively non-confrontational. Dave’s diagnosis has given me wings to speak more confidently and boldly when needed whether in discussion with a doctor or with someone who has asked my opinion. However, I don’t think I will ever be the “I’m going to say it whether you like it or not” type. That seems very self indulgent to me.
The other thing that Dave’s diagnosis has done for me is get me back teaching. Dave and I had a good discussion after we went to Johns Hopkins for a second opinion. He told me that it was important to him that I have my certification up to date in the chance that I would need it. That he would feel better knowing that I could work if I had to. So, my credentials are current, and I lucked into a fantastic teaching job. Working part time is going to be so much better for our family this year. STEM education is the push right now, and I feel fortunate to be getting involved when it is at its fledgling stage in our school and county.
So while cancer SUCKS in every way imaginable, it has pushed me in new directions which were much needed and long overdue.
PS I like to think that I am actually more like Carol Burnett’s version of Scarlett.