Author’s Note about Chose to Dwell in Smiles:
I wrote this poem on the anniversary of the day my mom’s cancer re-occurrence was diagnosed. I was and am so tired of living with the fear that her cancer would reoccur again. It is exhausting to carry so much fear around all the time. I try to focus on the positive most of the time. I read happy books, I watch happy shows and movies, and I hang out with people who remind me to dwell in smiles. My mom is still doing great and her cancer is in remission. In fact, she is considered cured again.
She was first diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer when she was 29 years old. I was two years old. The doctors told her to make her piece with the world and that she had maybe three months to live. She changed doctors and fought and fought and was in case studies for Tamoxifen and fought some more. She was pronounced cured at 5 years and still clear and going strong 10 years later. 12 years after she was first diagnosed, her cancer reoccurred. I was a freshmen in high school. The doctors told her she would not live to see me graduate. She fought the cancer off again and again she won. I graduated early (just in case) and she came to my high school graduation and watched me walk across the stage. She also came to my college graduation 4 years later.
Author’s note within an Author’s Note: This year (2013) she will celebrate her 59th birthday.
Doctors don’t always know everything. Sometimes miracles happen. Sometimes bad things happen to good people for no reason and there’s nothing you can do about it. Sometimes you fight with everything you have and you still lose. Sometimes though, sometimes you fight with everything you have and it’s enough and you win, and you live. Some battles are worth fighting.
This is often my internal monologue: “I am strong enough to hold how I feel. Emotions are fluid and always changing. This too will pass. I am strong enough to hold how I feel.“