LBBC guest blogger Tiffany Mannino has been sharing with us personal journal entries written in letter format penned to her unborn daughter while traveling through her breast cancer journey. In her collection of letters Beautifully Broken: Letters From a Girl/Woman/Human in Progress she reflects on her five year journey with letting go of the past, facing fears, learning to love, finding happiness in the moment, and realizing that she is exactly where she is supposed to be in life. Here she writes to her daughter about her feelings of being 4 days away from completing her chemo treatments.…
June 5, 2010
I have very exciting news… in four days from now, I will have my very last chemo treatment and then I will be finished with this little phase of my life! Who knew a few months ago that I would be excited about receiving a chemo treatment? It is amazing how much one’s perspective changes over time.
Speaking of changing over time, I cannot believe how much things have changed for me in the last month! It is such a miracle how different I feel on my second chemo regimen. I remember writing to you at the end of April and was literally a depressed mess. I felt weak, mentally drained, and spiritually barren.
Lately, I just feel excited most of the time. It is so true about the mind-body connection. When you don’t feel well, it’s very hard to stay upbeat and positive. Under the new chemo, I don’t feel nauseous anymore, I can taste and enjoy food again, and I have way more energy. With more energy, I actually have been able to do a little traveling. I’ve taken short trips to the beach and also to Niagara Falls. Being able to get out of town on my off-chemo weeks does wonders for my spirit. Looking at the ocean or falling water can simply breathe life into your soul!
I feel like I have come such a long way in so many ways. I’m sure you remember me writing to you expressing my complete disdain for how chemo was going to change my appearance. I know I was absolutely dreading losing my hair which I had been overly attached to my entire life. Well, I can honestly tell you that I accept my new look. I am ok with looking in the mirror and seeing a bald woman. Don’t get me wrong, I’m looking forward to having hair again, but I realize it doesn’t define my beauty. And do you know what…God works in mysterious ways. One of the reasons I was so attached to my hair is that I felt like I could hide my face with my hair. I’ve had blemished skin since I was about 13 and having long thick, crazy red hair distracted everyone from my face. Maybe God wanted me to really look at my face. Would you believe since chemo started I have had the clearest skin of my entire life! I’m not kidding. It’s soft, clear, and oil-free! God performed another little miracle. For some reason, he allowed me to keep my eyelashes and eyebrows. It may seem like such a minute thing to think about, but I’m so thankful to have them.