Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Building up.

Life is interesting. I look back at my life, all nearly 36 years of it, and wonder if I'm supposed to do something great. All of these experiences I've had in my short life so far - have I gone through all of it for a greater purpose? Am I supposed to help others who suffer through similar situations? Am I supposed to try and make things better?

People often ask me how I do it all: work, school, mom, wife, health problems, etc.

I think about everything that's happened to me and realize my life has been building up to this event. Just like it has over the last year - If I had been told last January when I went to my doctor for hair loss that I had the rarest form of lung cancer in the world that also happened to cause a funny, rare syndrome called Cushing's, I would had probably went into deep depression - instead, I got it gradually throughout the year.

So here I am. This is me. I cannot, and I never have, let my past be an embarrassment or lost, no matter how bad it was. What, you may wonder, could she had gone through that could be so bad? Here it is, in quick synopsis since this isn't a novel:

Grew up in a physically abusive home - father (I use that word loosely here) beat my mother and me (with a razor strap). My little brother eventually threw it in the big garbage can in the alley.

My parents finally divorced when I finished 8th grade.

At the same time my parents were divorcing, I was kidnapped, raped, and left in a field out in the middle of nowhere. I was fourteen. It's a long story about how I got back home, but I did. The men that did this are still out there.

I moved out on my own when I was nineteen to Salt Lake City. At one point I had no money for food. All I had was a supersized boxed of cornflakes and a giant can of powdered Country Time Lemonade. Yes. I actually tried cooking the cornflakes in lemonade. No. I did not eat it.

I got married at 24 and had Halle the same year.

I got a job in the OB/GYN Department at the University of Utah in 2001 working in the file room. It was an entry level job and I considered it exactly that. A few months later, I became an executive secretary for a doctor.

Over the last nine years I have been at the University of Utah, I have changed jobs seven times within four departments, all in the sciences.

In October 2004, I fulfilled one of my dreams of going to New York with my husband Craig. It made me realize that I wanted more out of life.

Over the following months, we decided me pursuing a degree would help in achieving that goal of getting "more out of life."

I found out that I could get a scholarship through my Indian Tribe. So I applied. I got it. So, I came up with a plan to finish a Bachelor's Degree in five years.

With a year and a half left before graduating, I found out I was sick. You know the story from here.

Now, I'm a few months away from graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Mass Communication with an emphasis in Public Relations and in Political Science - a dual major. I start radiation and chemotherapy on March 8th.

I'll graduate on Friday May 7th and start my last three-day round of chemotherapy on Monday May 10th.

So, you could say I've been building up to these events in my life. Could I help others? Is that what all of this has been for? I just hope it's been for something.

1 comment:

  1. Wow ... that is a lot for one person to deal with, but I do believe it is true that we never know how strong we are until being strong is the only choice we have.

    I've been poking around Cushing's sites for a while. I have had a lot of health problems over the last few years and a lot of things seem to point towards Cushing's but my doctor is convinced it is all caused by depression, so I'm not sure if I really have a physical problem or I'm just hoping I do because I don't want to accept that I'm just crazy. But, after reading all that you are going and have gone through -- I definitely realize that I need to quit the pity party and get on with my life. I'm amazed at your strength and your ability to rise above the things life has thrown at you. I wish you much luck with everything and that you find your way back to good health!