Baldies' Blog began originally in the UK by a 26 year old journalist with a blood cancer on a mission to inform the world about bone marrow donation.

He has since died, and I took on the cause of making cancer care more transparent for everybody.

Cancer is a disease that will touch everybody through diagnosis or affiliation: 1 in 2 men will be diagnosed and 1 in 3 woman will hear those words, "You Have Cancer."

I invite you to read how I feel along my journey and
how I am continuing to live a full life alongside my Hodgkin's lymphoma, with me controlling my cancer, not my cancer controlling me.

I hope that "Baldies' Blog" will prepare you to handle whatever life sends you, but especially if it's the message, "You Have Cancer."

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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Reminiscing: I was a Princess (Really)

Growing up, you may believe this or not if you knew me, I wanted the "princess life." I wanted the whole idea. I wanted to live in a castle with nice jewelry and loving people who helped care for me.

I have no idea how this jumped on to my "To do" list, right next to go to College in NYC. I was independent. I had goals of being a successful independent NY career woman, but I didn't see why I could have both?

Those two items severely limited where I could go to school. I  wanted a castle in NYC. 

Who would have guessed? Just like everything in my young life, I got what I wanted. It wasn't an exact fit.

The College of New Rochelle was an "All Girl's School" that didn't allow male visitors over night.


It also wasn't in The City or near a subway station.

Instead it was in Westchester and close to Buses to the Bronx or the Metro North Train to Grand Central.

I didn't mind learning with All Girls. I had a huge grassy campus with trees.

What I wasn't excited about was the strict Catholic Rules that students still had to abide by, especially curfews with men in the building, but that didn't matter since I was with J, I had my Prince Charming, and the campus was filled with castles. Even the new buildings were built to mimic the 100 year old ones that were there before.

They were all decorated in an old- wealth victorian style full of velvet, stained glass, hand carvings. 

OF course, that wasn't the only thing that made me a princess during college. Ingredient numero uno was Prince Charming, and though I didn't know it at the time, though I made him work hard, I had my Prince Charming taking care of me.

 Last week, Going to NYC, we left a day early to New Rochelle, the suburb of NYC where I went to college. 

It took me back for the years BC, before cancer, when we were a young couple healthy, in love with all our hopes and dreams in front of us.

 We were going to conquer the world.

We don't reminisce about our hey day often, but I vividly recall being treated like a princess. How did I get the Princess treatment from J?

Valentine's day freshman year made every girl on campus jealous of me when J sent me a dozen roses of all different colors every hour on the hour for six hours!! 

There were so many my room mate would claim them when I was out. The floor smelled like a floral shop. I was the envy of all girls at my all girls school. Even the hotshot, senior sorority leader who only got one blue rose. I was even tracked down for delivery in chemistry class. I don't know how he worked it out.

 As if the one gesture wasn't big enough, J'd visit me for the weekend every 3 weeks, and we'd go out in the city doing whatever, whenever we wanted to, because we were young and free on the verge of fabulous high paying careers.

 He took care of my cell phone and gave me a credit card "just in case," even though I was fortunate to have supportive parents who were paying my tuition, food, gas, insurance, costs, etc. I wanted to make supporting me as easy as possible for everyone.

Being taken care of by J and my parents, I was such a lucky young woman. 

We had worries. X came earlier than planned. J changed his work schedule, lived between our parents houses while I commuted. We both new it would be worth it. 

The plan was for me to graduate, possibly finish a master's degree to be a nurse practitioner, then J could go to college full time if he wanted to. 

J and the parents had our house was built and ready to move into when I graduated. I didn't have to worry at all about the building. All I had to do was approve the layout.

We thought we had all angles covered, every problem solved. 

I was going to work as an RN for one or two years according to the guidelines of most mater's nursing programs. 

J decided to go to school part time and enjoy it. Things were settling down. I was given some of the best years ever then!

It was great remembering with J and having the blanks filled in by friends this past week.

It's hard to go back there, because we all know where the story veers off a cliff. I remember taking a sigh of relief and thinking, before I got sick, what's going to happen now?

We'd gotten past a huge obstacle and were finally looking toward the good days we'd busted our asses for.

I'm lucky I had my Prince Charming for the good times, but I'm even luckier to have had him to support me through our never ending hard times. I know I'm among a lucky few that gets to have a truly committed relationship. I can only thank Jon for that.

Happy Birthday J

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