I am even more emotional than usual today…the holidays are here, its been a challenging few months, I see my oncologist to get my pathology results today.
Many of you have given me strength and hope these last few months and I am eternally grateful.
But I feel the need to express how incredibly grateful I am for my best friend. We were friends for years before we took our friendship a step further and fell in love about a year and a half ago. Being that we are both in our 40’s and both survived some unhealthy relationships – we both had some emotional baggage from our pasts. But we truly let our guards down and showed each other all the skeletons in our respective closets. Every secret, every scar, every wound – we shared with one another.
Eventually we moved in together about a year ago and our lives truly became one. We have had some rocky moments and fights like all couples do. A perfect relationship is not perfect-it is simply 2 souls who make each other better and who refuse to give up on each other. It is 2 souls who celebrate each others strengths and talents but also accept each others flaws; because we all have them.
We enjoyed concerts and birthday celebrations and a trip to Asheville, family days swimming with my parents at their pool, sundays in the park with our dog, trips to the skate park, going out dancing with our friends, nights laughing with friends at local bars. Overall we had a beautiful year together this year.
In September I started feeling sick and anxious and depressed. The company I had worked for much of the year went bankrupt and I found myself suddenly unemployed. My mom and I had an argument which caused us to stop speaking for months. But I also felt physically unwell. I didn’t feel like myself and I started having near-constant periods. Although I have always suffered from endometriosis and gynecological issues I blew it off as stress related.
But by October it was apparent I needed to see a doctor. The ultrasound revealed a large, complicated, irregular tumor on the only ovary I have. It also revealed a very thickened uterine lining for someone my age. I actually wasn’t alarmed because I have been dealing with fibroids and cysts and tests saying “pre-cancerous cells” since I was a teenager. But then the gynecologist said “Kelley I am referring you to an oncologist” and the nurse came and rubbed my arm to comfort me.
I couldn’t quite wrap my head around it. I suffer from anxiety disorder so I tend to stop breathing when I am scared. I paid the copay and walked into the parking lot and started hyperventilating and crying. I called a few of you in tears from that parking lot that day in October.
These past few months since that day have been overwhelming, frightening and extremely stressful. I withdrew from most of my friends and deactivated my Facebook account. I went to oncologist appointments and had biopsy after biopsy. The tumor could not be biopsied until it was removed surgically; that surgery finally happened on December 9th. It was supposed to be a 2 hour surgery but ended up being a 5 hour surgery. After surgery – my oncologist told us that he is confident my pathology results are going to be GOOD! Praise God.
Anyway…I spent a week in tears and totally convinced I was going to die of ovarian cancer because I had every single symptom. Every single one. I was drawing up a living trust instructing that half my assets be left to my daughter when she turns 21 and the rest to be left to my partner, Christopher. I would cry in the bathtub, I would cry in the car, I cried in our bed. Every fear and doubt I poured onto my partner, Christopher.
I got really sick in November and our entire bedroom and master bath was covered in my illness and he cleaned it all without a complaint and drove me to the ER. When I was too nauseous to drive myself to oncologist appointments he would leave work to take me. When my fears got the best of my “warrior spirit” – he held me and told me we would face anything together. He has been my strength; in every possible way.
I even told him he could leave because what man wants to be with a sick girl? He simply put his arms around me and looked into my eyes and promised me he was NEVER going to abandon me. Not now and not ever. He was the man who held my hand as they wheeled me into surgery and the man who was holding my hand when I woke up from surgery 6 hours later.
So many of you have told me over the years that I am the strongest person you know. I have survived a parents suicide, being raped, domestic violence, lots of surgeries, betrayal of the worst kind…it is true I am a strong woman. But these last few months…it was not me who was strong…it was my partner, my best friend. It was Christopher who kept me going every time I wanted to just give up.
I feel incredibly blessed and so grateful to have this amazing and beautiful soul in my life. I love you more than anything, Chris. And I always will. Thank you so much for loving me and being you.