The Season Brings Mixed Emotions

This post has appeared on the blog several times over the years.  The season still brings many mixed emotions with some even calling it “post traumatic stress disorder.”   I’m glad that we’re almost done with October and now it’s time for the annual digging in of the heels as the holidays approach.  Enjoy.


Fall brings mixed feelings for this girl.

I get why everyone loves the season because I used to love it too.

As a child and young teenage, I looked forward to going back to school because I has always hoped the new year would be somehow different than the previous.  I secretly also wanted my friends and I to break out into song on the school steps wearing our black Ray Bans like Michelle Pfeiffer did in Grease 2.  Yes, I might have been a dork.

As an adult, I longed for the glowing sunlight on a late September afternoon.  Nothing beats sitting out on your front porch basking in that last hour of light before the sun drops into the ocean.  I adored Halloween too, always taking great pride in decorating our home for the holiday — even before we had kids of our own.  Speaking of children, I wished for an October baby so that I could host a ghoulish-themed birthday party like the one I had seen in the movie Hanging Up.joseph-campbell-quote

My love affair with Fall ended though in 2008 when I was diagnosed with cancer.

I was completely blindsided and it crushed my well laid plans. That year was our baby’s year of “firsts” – Halloween (and no, I didn’t get an October baby but instead a January baby and we have rain on her birthday instead of falling leaves – but I digress), Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Those “firsts” went on as planned but it was definitely not what I had dreamt them up to be.

And here three years later, Labor Day behind us, and headed back into the season that changed me. It stirs up feelings I would rather just forget. I can’t help but look at the calendar and see October 15 as the day I was diagnosed, or October 23 as the day I had a 5 cm cancerous tumor removed from my left breast, or November 20 as the day nurse Rita injected two different chemotherapy drugs into my veins.

I hate that I haven’t been able to move on or forget just a little.

I desperately want to crawl under my blankets on those anniversaries but doesn’t that mean that cancer wins a little bit?  I can’t allow that.  So, this year I will look forward to the Fall like I used to. I will unpack those cute decorations, I will throw a ghoulish Halloween party for the little one, I will bask in the afternoon sun, and maybe I’ll even watch Grease 2 for old time’s sake.