Ode to My Husband

Mike and I at my MBA graduation

Major life events such as being stuck as the caretaker for your sicko wife can tend to put quite a strain on a marriage (on top of being forced to quit smoking while you watch your wife go through rounds of tests and getting bad news on top of more bad news). The first month of all of this put both of us on an intense emotional roller coaster that made you scream each time you got to the top (not the fun kind of scream). Throw in having to worry about how to manage the financial adventures of figuring out medical bills and remodeling a bathroom so that your sicko wife has her own personal haven could be a bit too much, but it wasn’t.

Breast cancer takes away a lot of things that women in society are taught make them beautiful. Your breasts will never quite be the same, whether you have a lump removed or have the entire breast removed. You feel violated, yes, reconstruction is way better than it used to be, but it doesn’t replace what they take away. Don’t get me wrong, I am happy with my breast expanders (albeit they make it so I can’t sleep on my side) and my surgical choice, but that doesn’t make up for the fact that I had to make the decision itself.

Chemo for breast cancer takes away your hair. So much money is spent on haircare and everything under the sun to make you have amazing hair that will get you noticed, which means the lack of hair may also get you noticed, but not in the way that you prefer. Of course I could have beautiful hair everyday if I chose to wear my wig, but hats get uncomfortable after awhile, a wig lasts about 2 hours max on my head.

Big kisses in Key West at the Southernmost Point of the US

My husband makes me feel just as beautiful to him as the day I found out I had cancer. I can’t tell you how much that means to me. When I get home I take off the hat and sit around in a tank top with a bald head because it makes me the most comfortable when I am exhausted, and Mike makes me feel just as loved and just as lovely.

Mike has taken over pretty much every household chore without much complaint. The healing issues with my surgery still leave me pretty much unable to cook, vacuum, scrub, reach high places, go grocery shopping, take out the garbage and everything else you need to do to keep up a household. Until I am 100% healed he will still be cooking and cleaning and taking care of me, along with working everyday. It certainly cuts into his fun time, but he has done everything he can to make me not feel like a burden.

Several people remark how I am smiling all of the time and seem genuinely happy. This is because I am happy, I have no reason to let this get me down, and Mike is the number one reason why.

PS. Chemo side effects are mostly gone as of yesterday, so it means I have a week of feeling pretty much normal! Yay!.

Author: Mandi

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