I wake each day determined to remain calm. Breast cancer and stress factors make you think twice. Breast cancer stress is enough on its own. Let alone all the fun events that we can go through in a day. Ask the damn dog.
Lovely Midwest morning here on Whip-poor-will Ridge.
So peaceful. Birds singing, white clouds sailing. Like it usually is here. A good place to recover from breast cancer.
Then the latest breast cancer stress hits the fan. My immune system hits the ground running…..
It started from taking the big, black, furry Newfoundland dog to do his business down by the woods and meadow. His name is Danny Boy. Sometimes I just call him Damn Dog. Like when he almost killed me in that Derecho storm. But I love him.
Recently when he did his thing, you know the ooompa stuff, he did a happy dance and charged to the other side of the field, through the woods and over the hill, me with no energy taking up the tail wind, yelling for the damned dog, but that is another story. So today, I attached the leash to the collar so he could oompa and then not take off, just a happy dance will do him as long as he does not back-kick the dirt, leaves and his shit into my shoes. So I have to choose, his shit in my shoes or racing over the hill in a maxi skirt and sandals through prairie cacti, snakes and coyotes…. yet another story.
Thank goodness I used the leash.
He was done with the happy dance. We turned to go up the hill and I heard swishing racing. Swishing through the meadow grass.
The fastest snake ever. Neon blue.
It is just trying to avoid the biggest fastest dog in its world.
And my breast had the familiar sensation of a sliver of hot iron plunged into the side. I have learned I am not alone. Women with breast cancer can have their emotions hanging around in their mammaries. Tell me a sad story and twang, breast pain. Almost in an accident, whammo, breast explosion. It’s not in the stomach anymore or heart thudding terror. Breast cancer emotions like stress and fear and sadness and anger – all in the breast.
Did you know blue racer snakes can run? I swear this one levitated, head up, hightailing for the woods. Running like he had twenty legs.
The snake was iridescent blue, chocolate brown eyeliner. Long enough to be straight-out six-feet of breast cancer stress. Since he was moving he was a good four-feet though in an exaggerated Z.
Did he head away from us? Oh no, blue racers, I later learned, they head to the undercover, the brush. He would have crossed our path if we had been headed further along the woods line.
Flight and fight are not options for me to deal with every day. Every time we go into flight or fight with breast cancer stress, our immune system takes a dip for about 45 minutes. Cancer cells get leverage. Snakes, thank you but no.
Me, I’m dragging the fastest biggest dog after me. Because when this damn dog saw the snake — he who is afraid of horseflies, hummingbirds and water — he sucks in his floppy face, swallows his slobber, probably so he can get a good bite —- straining to get to the snake and yelling, “oh my god mama that is sooo coooolllll” and me pulling toward the house (why do we always head for the house like getting there will save us?) and gasping “no, no, no, no.”
The snake was headed into the woods. We were running the other way. Honestly though, one cannot call this running. I was dragging a 143-pound dog by the neck.
Did you know blue racers climb too, trees, bushes, porches, barn timbers. Though not poisonous, blue racers are aggressive if cornered. And fast. And if they bite they twist their head to rip skin! I learned all this from a search to be sure I was right on the snake’s identity. Blue, snake, faster than any snake. Blue racer. Breast cancer stress for certain.
Well, I have had my excitement for the day. But it is a pretty snake, hmmmm.
Breast Cancer Stress #1
Essa Adams is a storyteller and green entrepreneur.
Breast cancer stress is the one thing she knows about lately. More to come.
For breast cancer support, recommending BreastCancer.org