In addition to my two newly acquired hobbies, running and blogging, I have many other interests. One of these is reading. This leads to the relentless, some may say obsessive, downloading of ebooks on my Kindle. One of my goals for 2018 (remember I don’t do resolutions!) is to tackle my unread Kindle library.
When reading, every so often something I read stays with me long after I’ve turned the metaphorical page. Today, while waiting in the car for my younger son to come out of school, was one of those days.
In ‘A Hundred Pieces of Me’ by Lucy Dillon, one of the characters has a life changing accident (don’t want to give too much away) and in speaking about the accident and his recovery he says that everyone had an opinion on who was to blame for the accident and the injuries he sustained. I’m going to quote the next bit, because to paraphrase may not do it justice.
“In the end, I saw this very perceptive counsellor who said that as long as I thought like that I was never going to let go of it and move on with my life because I’d always be the victim.”
As a survivor of breast cancer I have often been asked “why?”, and truthfully, have often asked myself the same question.
Why did you get cancer? It’s not fair when you are fit/young/healthy/don’t smoke/don’t drink/not overweight (delete as applicable). Why you? It doesn’t make sense. Do you have a family history? Why? Is it because you had IVF? Was it the hormones?
Very early on I would tell myself and others that it was just bad luck and why not me? However, people can be very persistent in needing a reason for things they can’t understand. We are creatures who like logic and order and routine, we do not like the unexpected or the unexplained. From Lucy Dillon’s words it is clear how I could have easily thought of myself as a victim, as someone who didn’t deserve this diagnosis, as someone to be pitied. I honestly never felt this way, to me it was always fate, it was rotten bad luck and nothing else. Does this say something about me and my perspective on life? I have never felt like a victim, awesome badass cancer ninja is more my style!