I want to have some finality to this project.
I want to stop thinking about it all...the...time.
I want to stop wondering what is going to happen with it.
But most of all, I want to get it moving so that people can read it! Just like cancer, I never imagined how long this adventure would take me to complete. It has now been 2 1/2 years since I wrote the first lines. It has been much harder than I expected it to be and sometimes I wonder why in the world I thought it would be a good idea to take on a project of this magnitude.
But then I read a section of it and it all comes back to me. This book has been directed by an unseen hand. There have been miracles all along the way and I am hoping that there will be at least one more miracle to come (as in, finding someone who would like to publish it!)
I know that there are a handful of people out there who are just as anxious for it to be in actual book form so they can read it and I appreciate that support more than you will ever know. Thank you for sticking with me. I hope that I can have some answers for you soon.
Until then, I feel like I should give you a little taste. A little nugget to hopefully get you excited to read more. So I close this post with an excerpt from my memoir,
"One Day at a Time: My Journey with Cancer."
The next few days went by without too much of an incident. Ellie had come to accept my baldness and discovered that she really liked to rub my head. I had preschool the day after I shaved my head. I had previously talked to the kiddos about what was happening so they wouldn’t be scared when they showed up at school and saw their teacher looking like a pirate. They were pretty cool about the whole thing. Some of them even brought me new scarves.
I began to think that I really could do this whole bald thing. It wasn’t such a big deal after all. I was pleasantly surprised at how nice and round my head was. There were no weird lumps or bumps and I thought that I actually looked pretty decent as a bald lady.
I relied on mostly on hats as I was trying to figure out the best way to tie the scarves. I had looked up a lot of tutorials on YouTube (thank goodness for the internet). I was having fun experimenting and was slowly getting the hang of things. I had not really needed to go out in public though. Only a few people had seen me in a hat or scarf and only my immediate family had seen me completely bald. The real test was when Sunday rolled around and I had to get ready for church.
Remember when I said, “Think of how much time I will save getting ready in the morning!” Wrong. Until I got better at the whole scarf tying business, it was taking me just as long or longer to get ready. Nothing looked right. I tried on scarf after scarf with dress after dress until the mound of clothing on my bathroom floor was almost as tall as Ellie. I felt like a gypsy. I finally just crumbled into a heap on the pile of clothes and cried my eyes out. This was at 8:45 in the morning. Our church starts at 9 am and I was in charge of the lesson for Primary that day.
This would not do. I had a decision to make. I could either let the cancer win and stay home from church or I could suck it up and get on with my day. I chose the latter. I said a quick prayer, grabbed the scarf closest to me and tied the darn thing on my head with a bun in the back.
Mark had been following me around wondering what he could say or do to make me feel better. I know he hated that I was feeling so down and wished there was something that he could do. So he did the only thing that he could do; he got the children in the car (along with the 25-lb. church bag that was overflowing with crayons, books, and treats to keep everyone occupied during Sacrament meeting.) Once I gained some composure, I joined them in the car and away we went, with smiles on our faces and tearstains on my cheeks.
We made it to church on time. I was able to make it through my lesson, through taking the Sacrament, and then I had Mark take me home. The nausea had kicked in and there was no way that I wanted to lose my cookies in the middle of church. I am sure that people would have understood, but there was no need to stick around and tempt fate.
On the way back home I felt empowered. I could add one more thing to the list of hard things that I had made it through. I felt weird and different walking into that church building. But no one there cared. No one laughed or pointed. The primary kids didn’t even bat an eye.
My Father in Heaven sent me among angels that day. Angels that made comments like, “I love that scarf! The coloring is so pretty with your skin tone!” and “You look beautiful today!” Perhaps they were just being nice, but I didn’t care. Those were the words that I needed to hear. Those were the words that calmed my anxiety.
I am so thankful that the first public place I had to go to was to church among the people that I call my “ward family”. I valued having had this support system of people who loved me for who I was on the inside and not what I looked like on the outside. I loved having a Savior who knew that I was feeling embarrassed and uncomfortable and helped me to be brave and overcome those feelings.
“I can do this. I can do hard things. I am trying to take this one step, one day at a time and not let myself get overwhelmed.”
To be continued...:)
I am loving my second chance at life.
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Copyright Desirae Ogden, www.desiraeogden.com, 2015.
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