After a night of agonizing anxiety I was crippled with emotion. My brain literally could not stop its obsessive thoughts about the what ifs of my cancer. "What if they find cancer in my lymph nodes?" "What if there are complications in the surgery and I wake up with a mastectomy that I had not thought I would have?" "What if I get a life altering/ending hospital acquired infection?" (sometimes you can know too much)
There was no way I was going to be able to focus on projects at work. Refusing to give way to the abyss of fear I abandoned the mental work that I had planned for my day and instead focused on projects that were primarily physical. Projects that would result in my feeling as though I had accomplished something but did not require mental tenacity to complete. I gave myself permission to step away from my calendar.
It began with packing up Christmas and continued into cleaning out 15-years of accumulated stuff in the upstairs closets and continued into almost every place in our house before finally ending up in the garage. I was ruthless, I was a mad woman - I poured all of the fear and anxiety that was attempting to overtake me into the work - for 2-1/2 days!
The piles for trash, Goodwill, and friends/family grew and grew. I was cleaning out as if there was no tomorrow. This expression even took on a whole new meaning - for the first time in my life I realized that nothing was certain. Even though my mass is extremely small and the prognosis for women like me is extremely good, the cancer diagnosis has shaken my world.
As the piles grew, I called in reinforcements to help haul off, clear away, pack up, and take away everything that had been purged. As the piles dwindled I realized that taking a break from cancer can be very cathartic and even essential. I'm enjoying the serene environment that has been created from de-cluttering.