(This is perhaps the most vulnerable post I can remember putting up. If there is one thing I aim for in this blog, it's
sexually explicit content honesty. So I present to you, the emotional and thankful post that follows. And just for the record, it was NOT my idea to take photos of this event. Carson was set on documenting if for all of my friends who were only there in spirit.)
I’m sitting at my computer right now with tears pouring out of me. At moments they trickle down my face like water searching out a river to call a home, at other moments they are pouring out of me in torrential sobs filled with a pain and anguish I didn’t know existed in me. I can most easily be likened to Diane Keaton in “Something’s Gotta Give.”
(David is eying my pile of presents from around the globe. He's totes jealous.)
(Blurry Libby and I on the couch as I begin to dig into the pile of presents. We kind of look like the morphed faces from "The Ring." I hope a crazy dead girl doesn't crawl out of my TV.)
I’ve just finished reading the assortment of letters that were passed along to me this afternoon from my dearest friends across the globe. Whether they were in New York, Missoula, Seattle, Michigan or Africa, the words of these loved ones touched me in strange ways. First there is the obvious amount of incredible love that I feel within the words and images they have passed along to me. At the moments when I am feeling the most alone and alienated by this strange illness, I will look to these reflections of the incredible people that continue to populate my life as a source of happiness and warmth.
I’ve been so lucky through my various places of residence to get to know people that will without a doubt be with me until the day I die. The words that I’ve just read seem to reiterate how good I have been, at handling this time and being a source of inspiration, yet it’s hard for me to see it that way. Most people haven’t been able to see the most vulnerable moments where I’ve wailed out (much like I am now). Those moments are the times where I feel most like a burden and get angry that I feel like my life has become nothing but Epstein Barr Virus. EBV, three simple initials that have ruled my life for far longer than I would like to admit. It seems like a cruel joke that after a summer of embracing acronyms (FAS, BIP/BON) my life has been overtaken by one extremely powerful acronym.
(Starting to read Nick's letter and realizing I would start sobbing so I should wait until my friends are gone. Only my neighbors will be able to hear me and think I'm crazy.)
(It was fantastic of Dan to come by, even if he did insult my obsession with terrible pop music. Ahh, one of our first arguments: Janet Jackson.)
It is these moments where I don’t know how to handle my sickness or what I feel like it has turned me into. At times I feel like I look in the mirror and am every bit deformed as Victor Hugo’s famous Quasimodo (notice how I referenced Hugo and not Disney….that was hard for me.) It feels like there is a spider web multiplying in circumference and spinning itself into every pore of my being.
These letters, of which there are many that found tears pouring out of me, constantly reiterate how happy these people are to have me in their lives, as is custom when someone is going through a hard time. Yet all I feel is incredible luck to have these people within my life. Thank you to everyone, whether you’ve just thought of me, sent a comment, an email, a text message, or a letter to let me know that you are thinking of me. Words cannot even begin to express how much the smallest things mean. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
(Posing with my wickedly crafty poster from my best friend since 1st grade, Michael. People used to stop us in the mall and ask if we were twins. I can't remember if that actually happened or we made it up. Michael? )
(Libby even prepared me some homemade chili while I opened letters. How spoiled am I?)
Days like these, and packages and love like I’ve received today are at once both comforting and heartbreaking. They are reminders of my current state and how much recovery I face. There is the unknown of when I will be able to resume what is not only my job, but one of my most intense passions, again. Just two days ago I had a meeting with ABT where I informed them of my decision to postpone my return date yet again. Sitting watching the faces of my employers I saw incredible compassion and understanding for my situation, but all I could feel inside was defeat. These reminders of my sickness leave me with a feeling of defeat and I try to spin it into feelings of passion and hope but at times it feels impossible. I want to thank every person out there for each word, which has at times felt like an admittance of defeat but in the light of my discovered faith feels like hope. Thank you.
I’ll be spending the next several months at home in Montana. The moment I typed that, I had to stop and let myself be overcome with the emotions that it presents. My face feels numb from crying. Over the past six months I’ve avoided leaving my apartment, my friends, my job, and everything familiar because I’ve been afraid. Perhaps returning home is the only logical step in what will hopefully be the last step on my road to healing. It will be impossibly hard to be away from all that I know for so long. My plan as of now is to stay until the beginning of March (beginning at Christmas) but as we’ve all seen, what was initially supposed to keep me out no longer than a month has had a way of making a home for itself.
The most foolish thing is that oddly enough, the first thought that crossed my mind when I made this difficult decision was the blogs. What am I going to blog about? I’m sure I’ll find a way. I just hope that everyone will stick with me. Thank you for everything.
(Checking out more presents. This one from the fantastic David.)