The Cancer Reality

Traumatic events are often blended out, I am told. Indeed the minuscule facts and even the bigger events of late, especially of the cancer experience, have already merged into the Larger History of Lokita. The other day I spoke with Susie, a woman who is currently going through breast cancer treatment.

We sat on that little bench and talked about hair loss, different chemo drugs, side effects, tips for skin care during radiation treatments, meditating in the chemo lounger, holding ice cubes to avoid hand-foot syndrome, steroids and antihistamines during chemotherapy infusions, chewing on ice during infusions to keep mouth sores at bay, and so on. Quite specialized subjects. Not your everyday conversation. It was like being in a weird reality show.

Here was “I” – Lokita, talking with Susie very knowledgeably about all these things. This  “Lokita” person knew all kinds of things about cancer and treatment etc, and she talked about it as if it was her natural, normal thing to talk about. “I” was observing this conversation as an outsider, thinking that, “this is just not possible”.

A parallel reality! How does “Lokita” know about all this stuff? The reality of cancer has faded away, and pretty quickly, yet I am able to access a huge information source immediately when it is needed. It was a very strange experience.

Then, two days ago I fell. Hard. I hit my nose, my wrist, hip and ankle. There was a lot of blood running out of my nose (it did not break, thankfully). I was shaking, freaked out. Managed to get to my cell phone and called Bee, one of my neighbor friends who came almost immediately, followed by my other neighbor friend Carolyn who has worked as a first responder for many years. They helped me calm down and stop the bleeding.

As I sat there with my head down, with a large icepack on my neck, and holding one to my nose, I felt an intense pain near the crook of my elbow. I could not believe it! It was super painful. I raised my head a little to see what was happening there. – Absolutely nothing. There was no injury, no blood. Nothing.

Then the pictures came: it was a trauma recall. Memories got triggered – from the chemo infusions, from being stabbed with needles there to have my blood taken every few days for many months, from the surgery. The traumatic pain of these moments is evidently still in my body memory, just waiting to be relived until it is resolved, released. So apart from the very real experience of blood running out of my nose, I was in severe emotional and physical pain from the cancer treatment that ended over a year ago. It was weird. That’s the only way I can describe it: weird, very weird. A parallel reality, again.

It is amazing that my body and my subconscious have stored every little memory of cancer and its treatment, when to me, in my conscious mind at least, it often feels as if the breast cancer never happened.

But then, when I stand naked in front of a mirror do I know for sure that it was real.

15 replies
  1. Danielle Adair
    Danielle Adair says:

    Here again…the traveler who has gone that road…and informed the next of their journey to look forward…yet the body remembers.

    Reply
  2. Claudia
    Claudia says:

    Too fresh, no matter how we move on, some portion of gray matter is holding on to the story.
    Hope the fall stays a short tale with a good ending.
    Sending you 🌺.

    Reply
  3. Christina de Jongh
    Christina de Jongh says:

    Ouch…. sending kisses… the body is so full of memories… sending love and hugs for you. May you recover to being your full happy self soon.

    Reply
  4. Marci Javril
    Marci Javril says:

    Oh yes, the fascia remembers. When teaching scar massage at a professional school, and the students were instructed to work on each other, a young 20-something man said the only scar he could find on his body was on his elbow, a little one from when he crashed his bicycle age 8. So his partner started to work on it. Immediately he went into agonizing pain and freaking out, and sobbing, and fell to a fetal position. We in bodywork know this is trauma release, and give space, give permission, just pay attention to the unwinding. Finally it came out. His mother had come home angry as hell because she had to leave work to take him to the hospital. And so, since his mom was so pissed off at him for being in an accident, he stuffed the pain, just shut it al down, buried under his humiliation from mom dragging him to the hospital, spitting at him while she blamed him for bleeding. Wow. That was all still in there, years later… #Humbling #LoveConquersAll #PermissionToBe

    Reply
  5. melantha
    melantha says:

    Always interesting, always touching my heart as I learn from you. I hope your nose heals quickly and more over that the cancer memories in your body find their way to the surface and out in less traumatic and more loving ways. When my mother went through cancer treatment she decided she could not “fight” the cancer as it was a part of her body, so she found another way through it. I grapple with fighting or just lovingly asking it to leave as the meds kill these cells. As I head toward some sort of remission (it’s not curable, but manageable) I move through my days in wonder, there’s little else really to do, for life is a wonder. Thank you dear Lokita, for all your insight, all your wisdom. Always love ❤️❤️❤️

    Reply
  6. linda zimmerman
    linda zimmerman says:

    parallel reality…now I know how to better understand my life..Thank you for your ongoing insights and authenticity..may you stay in the light dear one…

    Reply
  7. ane takaha
    ane takaha says:

    Wonderful to hear from you again Lokita. Hope life in Costa Rica is agreeing with you.
    I hear you about the re-stimulation. I has happened to me many times from big and small events. For me the fact that we can and do forget the pain is the happening here. It ‘s amazing. No woman would ever have kids again if it were not true. True grace.
    I fell on my face also. Out of the blue. Give yourself lots of time to heal….it shook my faith (arrogance) that my feet would go where I wanted, that I would have mastery over my body. I am told that the brain is looser as we get older so when you have a fall it actually moves around and gets shook up. Takes time to settle back in. It took me over a month and I still worry every time I pass that part of my room where I fell. Best of love to you, Ane

    Reply
  8. Anne Moore
    Anne Moore says:

    How vulnerable you must have felt! How merciful that there were two kind friends to hold you. And now you pass your mercy and wisdom on to someone who needs it. Only someone who has been there can do that. May these bits and pieces of lingering trauma release and leave joy and life in their stead.

    Anne

    Reply
  9. Holly
    Holly says:

    Oh oh oh, Lokita! Ouch! What a relief that you have neighbor friends with skills!

    Absolutely, the Body is our archive of all our experience, conscious or not. Beautiful work, connecting that in the moment and releasing what was/is ready for release…

    Reply
  10. Sue Tobias
    Sue Tobias says:

    Lokita- my heart so feels the description of your weird reality show. Sending many soothing warm caresses on your wounds from the fall!
    Much love, Sue

    Reply
  11. Dagmar Bohlmann
    Dagmar Bohlmann says:

    You are so talented in sharing your state of silent witness. Thank you for allowing us to reflect with you on carrying “issues in our tissues”. Now looking at the bright side, you seem to have hit everything else but your knee…Good job keeping it safe for your speedy-recovery dance!

    Reply
  12. Tracy
    Tracy says:

    SO sorry to hear about your fall Lokita! Hope you are healing fast, and yes, it is amazing how the body remembers. I too know that first hand. There is so much going on beyond our daily conscious perceptions. This was a good reminder of that for me. Thank you!

    Reply

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