Monday, June 27, 2011


Surgery day is getting closer, and I'm beginning to worry about everything. (If you knew me, you'd know I have been worried about everything for forever, so how could I possibly worry any more? Well, I do because I can. Or is it I can because I do?)

My older sister has flown into town to help with whatever is needed while I'm having surgery and recovering. YAY! She is also here on business (she has a client nearby), but will provide the greatest benefit by assisting my mother (who no longer drives and is dependent on me). In theory this is a splendid idea — move the load of responsibility off my shoulders and onto my sister's. 

However, sister doesn't know how much there is to be done. She tells me in an email that she will call me during the car ride to her work appointment to discuss any details. There is no  way we can go over everything on the phone and without her writing it down. 

So I write up some lengthy notes and take them over to my mom's. The three of us — me, mom, sis — sit at the kitchen table as I try to explain everything that I'm worried about: my mother's medical appointments, her upcoming taxes (which haven't yet been started), her bills (which I facilitate paying), her bank statements, her prescriptions (which I pick up) ... the list goes on. Both my mother and sister tell me the exact same thing: do not worry about anything. Huh? Aren't they listening? I'm the only one who knows how the bills are currently being paid. I'm the one who knows what's currently happening with my mother's health. (My mom, bless her heart, tries not to think about any of these details and therefore does not remember much about any of them). 

But somehow, I'm now supposed to simply stop worrying and focus on my surgery. Everything will be taken care of. Just like magic.

Well, I'm not buying any of it. 

Because here's what will happen: I will be out of commission for a few weeks while my mind is on my own healing. My sister and mother won't know (or recall) what is supposed to be taken care of if I don't tell them. Things will fall through the cracks. And when I finally re-surface, I won't remember anything either. Then my sister will fly home and I will be left with the fallout and the pieces.

What, me worry? That's crazy talk.

Maybe if I allow them to help me solve a small problem I see on the near horizon, they will "get it." So I tell them how friends and neighbors want to bring me meals, and that I would love that, but if I can't make a sandwich for myself, how will I be able to get out of bed and go downstairs and answer the door while also getting our two adorable but ferocious barking machines (otherwise known as dogs) to go outside so I can let "person with the food" inside without their being pounced on (or worse, if the barking machines don't like them, nipped at). OH, they say. That IS a problem!

These are but a few of the details I am stuck on in the days preceding my surgery. I am consumed with worry about everything because I somehow feel everything is my responsibility to worry about.

Then it hits me. Things are going to have to change or I will never get through this ordeal. I'm going to have to learn how to let go. I'm going to have to give up worrying. Cancer's going to have to "cure" my desire for control.

Right. Just like Humpty Dumpty learns to effortlessly dance along the edge of a brick wall.

1 comment:

  1. I too am overwhelmed with things I have to do.
    I know just how you're feeling. I just blogged this morning about the relief I am feeling knowing that my surgery was postponed until Aug 11th. Gives me more time to enjoy summer and get things in order. Right with ya on that sister!
    Debbi at


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