Just Can’t Get it Out of My Head

I can’t decide if I want to be cremated or buried. Hmmmm I have a feeling I need to walk this one back a bit.

If you can believe it, this all started in a totally un-cancer related way. It did start in a waiting room however. I have a dodgy ear, had it for years, it needed checking out and as I love a good waiting room (especially on a day when I’m feeling well), – here we are again.

We can blame this all on Kylie and the lack of a good crossword puzzle. Dad and I completed the puzzle in record time, which led to me discovering  Kylie on the front of Good House Keeping. Good House Keeping? Damn, didn’t it used to be Elle? or Cosmo at least? Now she seemed to be ‘guest editing’ the home decor section. Kylie had cancer once, this was not looking good for the home team.

I digress. While mooching about Good House Keeping, the page falls open on to a ‘Cancer Special’ – I’m not sure if this is just an every month thing; has the age range of GHK gotten really old (again poor Kylie, or do I mean poor me, she was a childhood hero)? or if I just got very, very lucky but anyway….

I’m normally well trained to flip on by this kind of thing. I don’t find it helpful; ’10 things to say to your cancer riddled friend’, ‘I found a lump under my Breast Implant, it wasn’t serious but it could of been – my breasts were fine before but I’m a Z list celebrity and my self-esteem seems inexplicably linked to column inches and my breasts (plus I can cry on cue)”

The photos these sorts of articles use, I mean really, Two young women hugging in a relieved way – all black and white, all vasaline lensed. It was a stock photo of two people who had never had cancer. The cancer surviours were on another page. You could tell because they looked entirely too made up and were not shot in soft focused. These were ‘real’ women.

I digress, again! This was not a good article, the way you could tell that, aside from the above, was the use of attention grabbing ‘Cancer Odds’ in font sizes bigger than anything else on the page. ‘Cancer Odds’ are only comforting to people who’ve never had cancer. I don’t think they’re even comforting then. Does anyone ever look at Odds about their ‘estimated’ life span and feel anything other than unsettled?

I hate cancer ‘Odds’. I must of said this before somewhere on here. Cancer ‘Odds’ are my pet peeve. Mainly because my Grandma was given 6 months to live, she took to her bed (quite literally) and 18 months later she was still there. They can be very wrong. Also, this is life, not a Derby.

There are ‘Odds’ on everything. The act of living is a very risky strategy. ‘Odds’ after lumps though. It’s a bit more personal, a bit more lived in. I tend to avoid these ‘Odds’.

Only this day, I didn’t. It isn’t really a secret that I’ve been *cough* having a tougher, less ‘Pollyanna’ time of things of late. A slight maudlin attitude has been pervading little blog.

I’m not going to recount these Odds here or ever. Dad has done a stellar task putting it in context. I have excellent and reassuring Doctors but it makes a girl think.

Well, the whole having cancer makes a girl think. I’d decided to put off this kind of thinking until after Chemo, one hurdle at a time. However, as we’ve learnt I get a lot of time for thinking and mortality makes it into the top-five more often than not.

So, I’ve been researching Wills, Power of Attorney, and planning my funeral. The sorts if things every 34 year old is doing, right? right?  A. loves coming home from a long day at work to discuss such things. He doesn’t find it depressing at all.

On my best days I see these things as empowering; everyone should communicate their wishes to their loved ones. Especially, while they still have all their marbles; though arguably, as I spend an inordinate amount of time wandering from room to room or staring into the fridge for hours – with no idea what I’m looking for, my ship has sailed….

I’m truly am an advocate, an evangelical even of pre-planning, I believe I spent most of the funeral telling people to get their ducks in line, so to speak.  Mum had very clear instructions which were useful at a very difficult time. It helped us feel we were honouring her as she wished, a final act of love. Did I do it myself? No, I was 31 and grieving.

It took a lump and surgery and Chemo and ‘Odds’.

Only, on my worst day, it’s scary, defeatist AND I can’t decide whether I want to be buried or cremated. There are pros and cons to both. Ideally I’d like a Viking type arrangement but I’m not sure that’s even legal.

Anyone got a compelling argument either way, answers on a postcard please. Oh and I’m contemplating a Kylie track, in honour of a great lady.