It turns out that the surgery and physical recovery were the easiest part of it all. The hardest part was the mental slide I found myself on once the stress of the holidays left and I had nothing to think about but life.
I'll be honest, I was gifted during that time by wonderful people, with huge hearts and generous kindness. I will never forget the flavor of the best and most soul nourishing soup, or the joy of sitting with a friend as she patiently helped wrap gifts. I will carry in my heart the perfumed scent of the knitted "neck cozies" my "second mother" sent me to protect my sore and scarred throat.
At the same time, I was deeply wounded by the lack of consideration by people I honestly expected more from. I didn't notice it at the time, but in the ensuing months, I admit to feeling seriously hurt at the lack of outreach, not even a get well card from places I would have thought would have reached out. Worst of all, there was one place I specifically reached out to prior to surgery with very specific requests for help (and this is a place that is designed and organized to help in situations just like this), and nothing was done.
This year, 2011, which I had hoped would be an improvement over 2010, the year in which I lost my faith in my health, has failed me. As is turns out, 2011 was to possess moments and events of great blessing, things I will remember with fondness and gratitude. It also contained some soul-shattering, confidence-busting events as well.
I feel like I have shut down in the past 12 months. I have no interior dialogue that doesn't involve mental ridicule. I feel constrained, but don't know how to change it. I think 2012 is likely to be a year of hard work for me mentally. I am finally beginning to feel ready to face it all and get it behind me.