The other night, my cat woke me up at 4:15 AM.
I couldn’t fall back asleep and my mind kept going back to my conversations with my doctors about the seemingly impossible decision about the double mastectomy option. At 4AM, it seemed a much more overwhelming decision than it did during the daytime. And, as anyone who has lain awake in the middle of the night knows, the affect of the thoughts were exaggerated and multiplied until I had worked myself into a serious state of anxiety. I could literally feel my fear feeding the cancer cells.
At around 5AM my husband whispered “are you awake?”. It seemed he couldn’t sleep either. I told him what my thoughts were and he moved closer to hold me. He stopped my talk about pros and cons and whys and wherefores and he asked me what I was feeling. I was able to get out that I was angry and really afraid. I was fighting so hard to hold back my emotions. Pain soared through my jaw. I decided to let go. I was embarrassed to be sobbing but I let it out anyway. My amazing husband didn’t try to fix anything – or to say the right thing – he just held me tighter as I cried.
It’s not like me to let myself to be vulnerable or to show any sign of weakness. But I am changing who I am – I am turning myself into a healthier version of myself. Crying in the presence of someone who loves me and accepting his comfort was a massive step for me.