June 9, 2010

Telling the Truth Faster

Jill had a breast cancer biopsy this morning.

Chris has been ill for a year with pancreatic and liver cancer.  He's determined to attend his niece's wedding on Saturday.

Nancy was diagnosed last year, in the course of another medical procedure, with pancreatic cancer. It was at an unusually early stage. A few weeks ago, four "hot spots" were discovered, and she's now wearing a chemo fanny pack off and on.  Here's a picture I took of her Easter week in 2001:

I have a similar photo in which she's wearing a paper tiara.  I like to think I've sent her copies of both photos, but she persists in saying she's seen neither. So here she is, my dear friend Nancy, college professor, Christian feminist, and enjoyer of Easter baskets and life.

Today I re-read the blogs I've posted this year and was surprised at how forthright I was and how much detail I included.  Good thing, that, because some moments are gone from memory, like the flat hats everybody was wearing in surgery; and how I bonked my head on the mammogram machine when I stood up out of a wheelchair. (It frightened the technicians, but I, being high on life and also accustomed to bonking my head on one thing or another, was amused.)

I'm also pleased with the measure of truth I managed to tell. It's complicated, this writing business. Often I don't feel like speaking, let alone reducing emotions or ideas to text. Some days I can't nail down a thought. Other days, I can't prioritize which of fifty fascinating thoughts should be documented.  But what we do, we writers -- what we do is what we can, in the ways we can, The hope is that in the action, we are holding others close across the decades and the miles whether we're saying our piece or keeping our peace.  So this post, really, belies its title. It isn't about telling the truth faster.  It's about telling the love, more.

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