I was steps away from the Far Away Café only it wasn't far enough away. The name evokes a tropical location, bongos and Pina Coladas. Instead, it was inches away from a packed security line at JFK and a foot from the flight I didn't want to take. I was way too close to reality and frankly would rather hide under the covers.My mom was recently diagnosed with brain cancer and I was going home to see her for the first time. If I could pick up any of the other shoes on that security conveyor belt I would. If I could get on any flight but this one, I would. But this was a choice I wasn't free to make. I had to face this and I had to cope. But how?
Two people close to my heart were diagnosed with cancer within five months of each other. I never thought I would ever have to face something like this, much less in the same time period. The "C Word" can be life-altering, paralyzing and can render you helpless, if you let it. This disease has tested me on every level -- faith, intuition, stamina, truth, resentment, vulnerability and trust. Most of all it has made me ask why way too many times.
The first diagnosis came several months ago, and it was earth shattering. I was the only person there when it was first discovered and I moved into autopilot, choosing to care for this person in a way that I had never had before. I battled with my own vulnerability; I was internally terrified, but my exterior reflected an artificial calm.
At times it felt like lights that were too bright, or a room that was way too cold, as it stripped me down to a reality I wished I never had to see. I broke down alone; I took lots of supplements and relied on the healing techniques that usually support me. I gave without hesitation, I prayed a lot and thankfully the situation has since stabilized.