Saturday, July 25, 2009

This woman's work

Sorry for my lag in posting lately. I have a few posts in mind but just haven't gotten them written down fully yet.

I'm going to stray off topic for a moment and talk about Wednesday night's episode of
So What You Think You Can Dance. The couple, Melissa and Ade danced a Tice Diorio piece by Maxwell, a cover of Kate Bush's "This Woman's Work" about a woman struggling with breast cancer. It was beautifully danced, wrought with so much emotion.

This piece reminded me of my mother's own breast cancer nearly 13 years ago. I often wonder if I was enough of a support for her, since I was riddled in ED Land. My mom has told me I was one of the only people who treated her like she wasn't sick, that she wasn't going to die, that she was still human. I wonder about that now and whether it was more to do with the fact I had a strong feeling she was going to beat her cancer or whether that was the only way I knew how to deal with it. She's thanked me for treating her like she was "normal," but I think I still hold some guilt for not truly being there in presence. My body was there, but my mind was in some distant universe. And I feel a sense of anger at myself for the ED taking such a huge role in my life at that point-- a point when things could have turned around possibly.

:sigh: There's no point in feeling guilt now. I was just reminded of that time in my life and how I wish I could have done things differently.


Kim said...

I have moments like this, when I think about how I could have been different if I wasn't so occupied with my ED. I wasn't totally "there" for friends and family members during some things. But, you know, everyone has "stuff" that they are going through that inhibits them from giving at certain times. We can't be perfect all the time. The people you love know you love them. Guilt is a bugger, so I hope you can reflect without being hard on yourself...

Kristina said...

I think it's so easy to second-guess and to look backwards, wishing we had done X or Y. There isn't necessarily one right way to act when a friend or family member is suffering from cancer or another illness, and there is only so much one can do to help/support a loved one. From what you've written about your mother, you have a strong relationship with her, and that may be the greatest testament of your support of her.
- Kristina

Tiptoe said...

Kim and Kristina, thanks for the comments. I'm not being really hard on myself. It was just a reminder of that time and place. It's interesting, because with my father's cancers, I have a very different reaction. But then again, I wasn't there on a daily basis, so that could have made the difference.

Anyway, I do know I did the best I really could at that time.