October 16, 2015

#Cancer Awareness: No Promises @marjoriebelson #RLFblog

Nothing is Promised 
From Kayelle Allen:This week on Romance Lives Forever I'm sharing stories by authors who have faced cancer either in themselves, or a family member. The importance of friends and family, and having a support system is vital. One key to success is being able to ask for help -- and then being willing to accept it. It's a lesson I've had in my own life during various times. I don't accept help well. It's something I fight with all the time. I'd like to think "I've got this" but sometimes I don't have as good a grip as I thought I did. I have a friend who's dealing with cancer right now. A friend's brother died from cancer last year. Cancer affects all of us. I hope I'm even half as good a friend as those you'll read about in this series.
I'm presenting these posts as an opportunity for the authors to share their real life stories, as well as their fictional ones. There's a short list of ways you can show your support at the end of each post.

No Promises by Marjorie Belson

Undefined and vulnerable, I often felt as if I were crashing backward through space, and found myself slipping into a post-operative depression after my bi-lateral mastectomy on August 2, 2001. In order to keep what remained of my sanity, I returned to work too soon, but misjudged the level of my stamina, as well as the fact that much of one's life is uncontrollable.
My first day back at work: September 10, 2001.
How could I, as well as thousands of others know that the next day, September 11, 2001, evil men with twisted minds had marked my city, New York, as a site for mass destruction, and would take perverse delight in their slaughter of innocents. In seconds, a still autumn sky would become animated with flames and smoke, choking the air with the sickening smell of lives dissolved.
My response to the news of the first tower being hit was one of disbelief. After the second plane crashed into the second tower, I knew my city was under attack. My first thoughts were for the safety of my own family. Desperate to know if my son and daughter-in-law were safe, and only after seeing them both later that day, could I believe that they were indeed out of harm's way.
The relief in being alive was tempered by the overwhelming loss of so many in a matter of minutes. Like countless others, I watched television, transfixed by its unrelenting coverage of our nation's greatest catastrophe. So many had survived personal tragedy only to be brought down, the victims of time and place. Humbled by a world gone mad, I offered my prayers for the souls and families of those who'd perished. In an instant, I'd become an insignificant speck and found it difficult to justify space for my personal trials.
While struggling to make sense out that which made no sense at all, I made an effort to accept that each step of my own unpredictable journey was a sign for me to live my life responsibly. I believed that I'd been given a chance to redefine my soul and thereby grant myself a sanctuary from the world in which I had come to dwell.
For me, as for many of us, each step forward was painful to take, but the need to move forward was far greater than the pull to go backward. Unless I accepted that my life had been deeply altered, I could remain trapped, frozen in a world of memories.
In truth, I'd been granted the opportunity to redirect and renew my faith in myself and in my ability to move to a level of profound and urgent awareness of the potential richness of my life. Cancer had attacked my body and challenged me in my entirety to face my life as it was and to decide whether I would choose to self immolate or rise again like a Phoenix.

About the Book

Marjorie is diagnosed with breast cancer immediately after her most joyous day, the wedding of her son Matthew. A month after undergoing a bilateral mastectomy, on her second day back as an early childhood teacher in Brooklyn, the world is enveloped by 9/11. As she continues to mend, she discovers that Matthew has enlisted in the Armed Forces and is to be deployed for six months to the Persian Gulf. She has chronicled it all so that others can grasp the joy of survival through her story.Discover and delight in her experiences: how she overcame the apprehension about her sexuality after a bilateral mastectomy and reconstruction; how she let her family back in; how the man in her life coped; how trips to Atlantic City became therapy; how friends helped her search for the perfect breast implant design; and how she learned to sleep without Ambien and Vodka.
Marjorie Belson is a quintessential New Yorker. Born in New York City in 1945, she received both her undergraduate and graduate degrees from the City University of New York. As a single mother, she chose to teach early childhood education rather than work on Wall Street.
Motivated by her experience, she started writing this book in 2004.

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1 comment:

  1. Welcome back to RLF, Marjorie. Happy to have you here. Thank you for sharing this powerful story.


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