I had a wonderful three day weekend with my family at the beach. That is, during the day. Saturday and Sunday nights were full of nightmares. As I mentioned yesterday, three years ago yesterday, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I had a wonderful day yesterday, during the day. Last night I dreamed that I had a scan and that there was evidence of a recurrence. I spoke with a radiologist on my dream phone. I can’t remember quite what he said, but I recognized it immediately as a segue to bad news. I told him, “You are saying that to tell me that my cancer has come back!” He admitted that he had. Healthcare professionals, for the record, I am also a deliverer of bad news. I know your tricks, especially when it is  dream and my unconsciousness is writing the story.

In the dream, my husband looked at a written report and in a tone that communicated a lack of sufficient concern, he said, “It says here that it is an 18 meter mass.”

I grabbed the paper and saw that it said that it was a .18 meter mass. “Oh my God, John! It’s a .18 meter mass, not an 18 meter mass! That means it is a 1.8 centimeter mass NOT 18 METERS!”

(Dream mind does not always move the decimal point correctly, I admit. I also think dream mind perfectly illustrated the most stupid of the stupid marital disagreements, the one that MISSES THE POINT. I have DREAM CANCER GOD DAMMIT! Stop fighting with your husband. Neither one of you know how to treat DREAM CANCER!)

People, you get it. My brain is working crap out. Mom, if you are reading along, my brain needs to work crap out. I am doing my very best to keep the crap to a minimum. It is easier during the day time. I had a wonderful day yesterday and a wonderful today. I have less control over the worlds that my brain creates in my dreams.

This year was easier than last year. Perhaps next year will be easier than this year. Healing is a process that is approximately linear over time. But it has its fits and starts.

This morning, John and I took a walk on our own. That time together, along with the sweet historic buildings, and the beautiful farmland, did much to quell the nightmares.

I wish I did not still have them, but I do.

I am, in sum,  a pretty happy person. It has been awhile since I let the fears in my nightmares ruin my waking hours. I didn’t do that today, either.

Living with the uncertainty of life, the horrible, the traumatic, all of the things that I have experienced thus far, for me, is not about pushing it out of my mind. I can’t! My mind does not work that way. If I can’t notice both the good and the bad, I can’t help people as a psychologist. I can just spout platitudes that are not true and do not honor the hardship that many people experience.

And if I don’t notice and validate the good and bad in my own life, I can’t live with the kind of truth that gives me a sense of purpose and integrity.

I need to notice and remember in my life. But I’m living, too.

And pretty darned well if you get right down to it.

My selection of a  Boho Chic outfit thumbs its nose at nightmares!

My selection of a Boho Chic outfit thumbs its nose at nightmares!

The gentle farmland is decidedly not nightmarish.

The gentle farmland is decidedly not nightmarish.

Even pink, in its original form, is not scary to this breast cancer survivor.

Even pink, in its original form, is not scary to this breast cancer survivor.