Thursday, 30 June 2016

Everyone Has Bad Days

Yesterday I broke down. I literally crumbled into a ball and bawled my eyes out. It was an ugly cry. It was a release. I was doing everything wrong, forgetting everything, at least I could say the kids were safe and sound.

My depression became real to me in that moment, curled up in the kitchen next to the sink of dishes I was trying to clean. My memory is messed from so much chemotherapy and stress. My body is still exhausted even though I've been on about 3 weeks of my 6 week chemo break. My back and shoulder give me more pain by the day. I have to decide if I want to risk another surgery and have my breasts identical or play it safe and have them slightly disproportionate. I'm constantly reminded the realities of my cancer because I need to explain it to everyone I meet, even doctors don't understand stage 4 breast cancer. I had a few friends try to help us raise a few funds to help us be less stressed, but some emergencies depleted that quicker than I ever imagined. Another friend started a GoFundMe page to try to get us some assistance, but that's not getting any support...which is completely disheartening. My colouring books that were designed to help my family aren't selling, just another kidney jab to my life.

I'm feeling like a failure. My attempts amount to falling further behind. My mind makes me forget important things/dates at the drop off a hat. How am I supposed to be a functioning adult when my injuries from the car accident and complications from cancer keep me from doing basic things, like remembering, cleaning, walking...I'm stopping there before I further depress myself.

I wish I had the answers. Until then I'll wait to see if the antidepressants start working soon

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

What is YACC?

So.  What is YACC?  The quick answer is, "Young Adult Cancer Canada" (, but that's not the full answer.  YACC is something much more complicated than that.

YACC is the feeling of not being alone.  It brings together those of us that have cancer, had cancer, live with cancer, love someone with cancer, support someone with cancer, and many more combinations.  We have a starting point to understand what life is with cancer because of them.  We have a way to unite and share because of YACC.  YACC gives us the connection that we thirst for the moment we hear the words "You have cancer."

YACC is the middle finger to the idea of being the typical cancer patient.  It helps us see people enjoying life while their body scans light up like a Christmas tree.  We see life in the defiance of the the shadow of death that lurks in our bodies.  YACC lets us believe that we can have life in this vortex of despair.

YACC is the sorrow of seeing others leave our community.  The grief of being here while others did not make it.  But, through us, they are celebrated.  We honour them by keeping the truth of YACC alive in our hearts.  We miss them as they would have missed us.  We do find solace in the fact that we can grieve together, that we can cherish our times with the fallen as a community and not just wallow in our darkness alone.

YACC is a heart that welcomes us the moment we connect.  The moment we are joined by email, text, online group, or in-person, we are one in the same.  We are loved, we are understood, we are united.  It is the one point of wholeness.  We are unquestionably one.  YACC is devoted to us as individuals and as a group.  YACC is accepting.

What is YACC?  I am YACC.  We are YACC.  YACC is living after hearing the word cancer.  YACC is life.

Might sound a bit creepy, but honestly, until you are a part of YACC it's hard to understand.  I hope you never need to comprehend this feeling, never need to answer the question "What is YACC?", but if you to remember one thing:

"Any cancer, any stage, YACC's got your back."