Bald Is Better with Earrings (and a sexy Piano Man who gets funky pre-going-bald haircuts with you)

“Don’t think of it as dying”, said Death. “Just think of it as leaving early to avoid the rush.” ~ Good Omens, by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman  

 

Nope, I am not dying just yet, my Wicked Luvs, so stop reaching for your blood-red-and-midnight-black best… I just really love this quote. All right, I love most Pratchett quotes… and when my Knight Writer’s imaginative wit is joined by the yumminess of Neil Gaiman, well… I must share the wild, wild, wild wisdom.

I love that those words embrace the soul and center of my chronic positivity: I do believe, believe, believe… that there will always be something great to get out of even the worst of situations: if the next few months promise to keep you dazed for hours at the time, catch up with all those TV shows you’ve been meaning to watch; if all your bits get so exhausted that you feel they are about to fall off, think of the whole thing as a challenge against your endurance; if the glorious jungle that is your hair is about to fall off in a week or 3, get funky haircuts with your partner in crime, in love, in living; when life gets too serious for games, play seriously hard; when darkness threatens to feed on all that is bright, let your fire burn, shine…

This year, my Piano Man and I were not so sure we would make it to New York Comic Con. I was supposed to have a port inserted last week, on the same day the convention started. But… completely coincidentally (and not because my doctors totally rock), the surgery was scheduled for after the convention. We did not attend two or 3 days, as we have done in the past, but we got to go on Sunday. And since the very first thing we saw (a Good Omens booth) included the phrase “third nipple”, I just knew all would be well (and slightly hysterical).

If we’re friends on Facebook, then you already saw this picture. Still, I had to share it again. I mean, how often do you get to show the faces of your husband and your TV boyfriend in the same picture? *waves at Crowley aka the coolest Doctor ever*.

There was not a lot of swag (that my Piano Man and I were interested in) this year, but we found rather cool earrings for the not-so-little Princess and for me. This pair glows in the dark. I might have to take them trick-or-treating.

Remember that bit I said at the beginning? About how “I believe… that there will always be something great to get out of even the worst of situations”? Well, I have finally figure out what to do with all the pins I have been hoarding for years. This one, which reads, “I’m wondering what to read next…”, was a gift from Rommy. The black ribbon came with a gift from Emma. See? I did not lose a breast, I just found a cool place to show off my pins and ribbons and scarves. 😀

These two might be my new most favorite pairs of earrings. How many beings get to say that they can dangle the TARDIS and two bat’leths from their ear lobes?

 

health Updates and other bits…

1. I am doing well, just busy juggling doctor’s visits and new treatment planning.
2. My inbox is full and then some. I’m not ignoring you, but… it might take me a while to get to your messages and emails and such.
3. The Beautiful Freaks Fest 2 announcement post will go live Monday or Tuesday. What? Don’t tell me you thought we would skip this year. Of course not! freakish beauty is relentless. Besides, nothing replenishes the soul (and distracts the flesh from hurling its guts out) like a wild bit of cyber-partying with awesome friends.
4. The title of this post was partly borrowed from Andrea Hutton’s Bald is Better with Earrings: A Survivor’s Guide to Getting Through Breast Cancer.
5. I don’t like even numbers, so here is an odd line… just for me (and for you, too, of course… if you want it): be good, be wild, be deliciously you… always.

 

Love and Lust and More…

“Love gives you something extra… It makes you limitless…” ~ Adam Scythe

 

I need no one (other than me)
to love me, to want me,
to make me feel
desired, but…
that look, that wild look
in your eyes, that deep dance
between love and lust and more…
oh Love! that wanting look is need
I never knew I could relish in
needing from anyone… but me.

 

the wee notes…
– the other day, my Piano Man and I were in bed. I was being my healthily naughty sexual self, when he smiled one of those smiles that makes human beings hold their breath until undies begin to drop and… well, you know the smiles I mean. Anyway, he smiled at me, and said, “You are an incredible woman. This hasn’t changed you at all.” One of his hands was on my mastectomy scar when he said that. I doubt I’ll ever be able to explain exactly what those words, that smile, that touch… did to me, what that moment meant to me. So, I chose to poetize it instead… hoping your own heart (and lungs?) can feel some of it. Oh, and… um… the fact that my Piano Man and I broke the bed shortly after that is totally unrelated. Really! Stop laughing! All right, you don’t have to stop, I start roaring every time I think about it. Bwahahaha!

– Linked to Poets United.

 

Vortex of Passion, by Leonid Afremov

Maliciousness Loves Masks

Since I was not fast enough to get rid of a particularly nasty bit of heartlessness, some of your eyeballs were exposed to the putrid words left by certain excuses for human beings who read “Make Yourself Fortunate”. I wish to request (of those of you who read the comments) that you don’t share the persons’ names. No, I’m not trying to protect those slugs. I am not that nice. But I believe that sort of people is best ignored. We can—and should—remember the lessons carved by their lack of humanity. But… like Gunny Highway says to Profile in Heartbreak Ridge, “Don’t give the prick the satisfaction” of receiving any claimable attention.

I won’t share all they said, but here is some of it: “Recognizing you’re as weak as everyone else will help you in the long run. No one can fake forever. I’m sorry that you had to get cancer to learn but better late than never. I’ll pray for you. But that’s not always enough. Pray for your own salvation. If you accept we are here to serve His will I know He will listen. Sometimes we need to fall to remember our place.”

The rest includes so much gloating that for a second, I was certain this person was joking. But the punchline never came. Nope, not even after I reread it a couple of times. Once I deleted the comment and emailed those of you who raged at the idiot on my behalf, I did a lot of thinking, tried to figure out what could motivate a soul to act in such a way towards another. At first, I thought, It’s fear. [This individual] is just scared. Cancer (even someone else’s cancer) can terrify people to the point they stop using their brain. But a follow up message, freed me from my unjustified attacked of kindness. “Afraid to let others tell you how they really feel about you? That won’t help you. Maybe you need to ask yourself why you got the cancer in the first place. I’m not your enemy. I’m trying to help you.”

If you are both amused and disgusted by the last bit, you aren’t alone. But don’t let it trouble your heart or mind. It is not troubling mine. On the contrary, I’m grateful. You see, one of the eyeballs who got to read the stinky tripe before I could delete it is the child of one of the tripe-spewers, someone who has been trying to sweet-talk me into allowing her parent back into my life since the first day I said goodbye.

The most devastating part about this whole thing is that “Make Yourself Fortunate” was not even inspired by my experience alone. It was the result of a conversation I had with someone who is having a terrible time dealing with the physical effects of her breast cancer diagnosis. We were waiting to get fitted for lymphedema sleeves, when she burst into tears. I didn’t know her, but she was sobbing so violently that I hugged her anyway. She clung to me. And I had to bite my cheek and tongue not to cry with her (when I cry, I bleed through my nose… and have problems breathing). She said that therapy isn’t working, that her family and friends don’t get it, that she feels so alone. She asked me what I did to keep from going crazy. “You’re young”, she said. “They said it’s harder for me because I’m young. But you’re young too.”

I can’t quite remember everything I said to her. I mostly rambled… and patted her back. But I let her know that I’ve been sick for a long time and I think that readied me for this. Also—and I suspect this might not have helped a whole lot—I told her that I’ve been known to enjoy a good brawl. Cancer might not be something we can always defeat, but we can drop him on his ass for a round (or more) even if we lose teeth, boobs, hair, and friends we thought we had… in the match.

My response to her fed most of the previously cited poem, especially this bit:

if…
…misfortune claims [you]
craft wild new ways
to show your teeth—
make yourself fortunate
again, again, again…

 

I almost didn’t publish this post—I didn’t like some of the energy fueling it. Then, I remembered a poem bit I wrote three weeks or so ago… and changed my mind:

Malice wears masks
to keep from the looking glass
the worst of its rot.

The thought behind those three lines reminded me just how important it is to share certain terrible truths: there are too many people out there who use religion, social norms, and an individual’s state of mind to manipulate him or her into feeling like less. We can’t allow that kind of scum to think that we don’t know what they’re up to; or, that we can’t fight them. We can (and will) fight and defeat them! Together, we must show them that their self-righteousness won’t be allowed to suck the light out of our wonder and fierceness and hope and hunger… for life. We can see under their masks, can’t we? And we know that their sort is weak, weak, weak… even if their tongues can be dangerous (if we don’t cut them off). So… chop-chop-chop to you, despicable scum… first you choke, choke, choke… and then you are gone. 😉

 


My mastectomy incision starts at the center of my chest and ends about an inch into my axilla. The armpit stitches are uncomfortable and… painful. But the mastectomy pillow my Mother-in-Law crafted for me makes it all so much easier. The fabric is super gentle on my traumatized flesh and the pillow keeps the skin on skin (& hair, did I mention that I can’t shave?) contact from torturing me. Yay! for soft miracles.

That’s the thing about cancer and other horrors. They don’t only bring curses into our lives, they bring blessings too: they provide new reasons for us to love people we already loved, they help us start loving people we were not even sure we liked, and yes… troubling times of this sort help us get rid of maliciousness that pretends to be kindness. As Audre Lorde suggests, in The Cancer Journals, cancer can be “another weapon, unwanted but useful.” My armor keeps growing… stronger.