Saturday, October 28, 2006


Tomorrow's Daylight Savings time for much of North America. When I was in college, this was a welcome extra hour of sleep. Now...I see it as one full hour to myself. It's like an hour given to me. Wasting that extra hour on sleep seems, well, wasteful. I could use it to work on a book review I have due for a paper on Monday, but I don't want that hour to go to work. It's my hour - I don't want it to go to my employer. It's supposed to be awesome outside, so I'm either going to give it to a very long run or a lengthy run of my sister's dogs.

Speaking of which... my mom called today and told me my sister discovered a lump in her breast. She hasn't even told her husband yet, since she thought he had a bad week at work. What she doesn't understand is that any of that stress that her husband is carrying around will instantly turn benign when she tells him this. People are like that. If your biggest worry is that the coffee machine at your work is broken, then, yeah, you're going to get bent out of shape when you discover that coffee machine is broken. We're naturally wired to handle what we're usually accustomed to.

I told my mom I was very concerned.
"You're concerned?" she snorted, as in setting up a "How do you think I feel?" remark (my family has a bad history of martyrdom).

I guess it hasn't sunk in yet. One thing I am grateful for is working in the radiology department for a hospital for six years. I reassure myself that scores of instances, these lumps turn out to be calcification or cysts. I reassure myself that this was detected early, by a self-examination. I reassure myself that I know scores of breast cancer survivors. I tell myself not to go into worry mode until she goes in for a biopsy on Monday and gets the results later in the week.

Still, this shit has a unique way of putting things into perspective, mainly...
  • Instantly renders all of the insecurities and petty shit that I've obsessed over, occasionally in this blog, meaningless. After hearing the news, I called my best friend. Fuck it if he didn't call me first. We laughed, he said he would spend a few days up in Omaha and it was like we never lost contact with one another.
  • Unfairly classifies my sister's story as some lame "Lifetime" story. It seems that each time the phrase "they found a lump" comes up, people who have never went through this (and even people who have) automatically think of a "Lifetime" movie.
  • Serve as a critical reminder of mortality. Contrary to popular belief, you honestly cannot live "every minute as if it were your last" because the mundane stuff that makes up daily life over time can be just as important as the monumental shifts in your life that determines your character. But moments like these crystallize your beliefs and outlooks. I'm hoping that for my sister, these next few weeks will serve as just one of those "scared at a glance of ones own mortality" moments and nothing more.


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