Friday, March 14, 2014

I am ferocitas

I woke up this morning feeling... not exactly like P. Diddy, but a bit badass. Sure, I had an oncologist appointment this morning, but I also had a new Vitamix, got a pretty good sleep, had not yet broken my Seinfeld habit chain on my calendar and... holy shit, can I compartmentalize. A bit sociopathic, really.

See, I just found out last week that the cancer is baa-aack, and although I've had moments of being bummed or downright panicked about the possibilities, I've been pretty chill about seeing and feeling that malignant little rash on my chest every morning and night. Not exactly no big deal, but no big drama. Then today arrived like any other day. I played border collie for my kids to herd them out the door and into spring break camp, and shook my hair around to try to look like Tilda Swinton. No dice, but still a bloody good colour.

When I saw my old oncologist again, striding into the room, shaking my hand like we were about to do a business deal, I felt confident, but like I was about to negotiate, not get another diagnosis. Then Dr. A blew my mind and I remembered how this thing can knock the wind out of you.

The "affected area" (which is not really a tumour, but a rash) is about 5 cm and I have a slightly enlarged lymph node above my collar bone. It's the same cancer from 2010, back and better than ever. I'm being queued up for a litany of scans and doctor appointments, and surgery and skin grafts will likely be later, after we can shrink the rash (and the possible malignant lymph node) with six months of chemo.

I was a bit stopped in my tracks, but there was no time. Hormone therapy and monthly injections or hardcore chemo? Port-a cath or PICC line for your scarred-up veins? Cancel your trip to Hawaii in July and ruin your family's life or skip a treatment, travel and risk infection? Now, now, we need to know NOW!

I was a good little cancer patient and said yes to hardcore chemo, maybe to the port-a-cath and shit, I guess I have to re: cancelling the trip and making my kids cry.

So here I am once more. This time with feeling.

I'd love to have company. It'll make it more fun to share my pink mohawk pics before I shave my Tilda in a few weeks. I'll miss my eyelashes, but getting unfettered dust particles in my eyes gives me an excuse to wear some wicked shades.

And the blog title? I still feel badass, ferocious, and completely ready for this do-over. Bring it.


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    1. Now that’s my girl! If cancer ever had something to be afraid of, it is you ... I love you in so many ways ... but one of the best ways is when you are BADASS! As I mentioned before, when I see this picture I can almost hear "High Noon" being playing in the background. I am officially signing up as one of your posse

    2. That badassness comes from thou, mamacita.

    3. I'm more then happy to board your 'badass' train (again)! Your last 'journey' was more than inspiration to me Carissa, it's helped me time and time again during my own. I may not be fighting cancer but in my dark hours when I fight to keep my son alive/well I often think of you and your strength. It was because of you that I started to blog (cathartic to me) when our Mr.B came into this world with an explosion (no 'bang' was big enough for this kid). I look forward to laughing, crying and sometimes wanting to scream with you. Thank you for your writing!

    4. I'm with you every single step of the way, doll. With love, support, positive, healing energy and an ever-present shoulder to lean on. I AM HERE. And I love you to pieces. This C-dawg better be prepared for your wrath.

    5. Port. Get a port. It was the best decision for me ... save my veins.

  2. Our thoughts and prayers are with you Carrisa all along your journey. Strong woman, bit bad-ass...go strong! take care.

  3. YOU GO GIRL!! You've conquered it before, you'll do it again. And this time, it WON'T dare come back. you and your writing inspires and teaches me. i'm jumping on board and will share your journey. fight fight fight. god bless you. love you. XO