I love my brother. I really do. I idolized him as a child. He taught me to play ball. He always let me tag around even though I was 6 years younger. He even joined the gymnastics club when it turned out I was better than him at something so he could beat me at HORSE. You don’t find brothers sweeter than that. But by god, he also took me to get a tatoo when I was FOURTEEN years old. WTF Jesse. He had a Canada flag, and I wanted one too. So, I got a “Made in Canada” stamp tattoo and thought I was the coolest girl around. It’s terrible. It was terrible then, and with 20+ years it’s gawd awful. Thankfully, even at 14 I was smart enough to have it placed somewhere that no one would ever see it if I didn’t want it known. But, now I guess my secrets out of the bag.
Yesterday I had my radiation mapping appointment. Four more tiny tattoos lay across my hips and abdomen. The weight of these are heavier. Their importance searing into me. They represent the permanence of this journey on my life. If I kick this, beat the odds, live many years into the future, when my hair has grown back, and the scans continue to come back clean, I will never be who I used to be. I’m forever changed. The shift on perspective cannot be undone. And, to be honest, for that I’m grateful.