I thought about it, long and hard.
I don’t want the life or death my aunts had,
Life oozing out of my pores for months.
Unliving life, not living it.
I want to be me.
All of me, preferred,
But most of me if that’s not possible.
I could stand to lose some weight anyway.
And who doesn’t like to shop?
And if he doesn’t love me without them,
He didn’t deserve me in the first place.
So I called the office and made an appointment.
He was glad I called.
He started his campaign again.
I cut him off.
“The protocol,” I said, “is research.
Find out what’s best for me.
In the meantime, I’ll do my own due diligence.
There are survivors all over the world
Who don’t depend on hospital policies,
Or big drug companies building up their profits.
There are doctors taking chances,
Really trying to find a cure.
So you do your thing, and I’ll do mine.
And if my way doesn’t work,
I’ll meet you in the OR.”
So I did. My own research, that is.
Everything from mushrooms to peroxide.
Naturopaths with great track records,
And waiting lists four miles long.
It would take weeks, months even
Just to get in for an exam.
And I didn’t have that kind of time.
And don’t even think about insurance.
What little I had wouldn’t cover experiments,
Not to mention a pre-existing condition.
So I lifted my eyes again and said,
“Why me, Lord?”. And He smiled.
And the words I heard but did not see were
“This will only make you stronger.”
So I gathered my strength, my faith,
And my determination to live and go on loving.
I walked to the mirror
And took a good, hard look.
“I’ll miss you guys,” I said to my image.
“We had some great times, you and me.
But the time has come to part our ways.
I want to live.
And I don’t want my life compromised
With worry, pain, or weakness.”
“I want to live!” is the last thing I said
Before counting to ten and I was out.
Not down for the count, but out for the moment.
I’d come to terms with who I am
And who I would become.
I want. . .