Shit has been getting intensely real lately. Not just a little real, and not just in the epically awesome Martin Lawrence/Will Smith way seen in Bad Boys II (since I know you’re curious). For the first time in my life, I’m watching things unravel in a manner over which I have absolutely zero control, and it’s making me crumble to pieces.

girls dancing in field

Nearly three weeks ago, my mother went to a scheduled doctor’s visit for a follow-up mammogram. I thought nothing of it — it never even occurred to me to give it a second thought. By the time my mother called to let me know the doctors had indeed found a lump and had performed an expedited biopsy, there was absolutely no doubt in my mind what was coming about. You see, I knew that for 24 years things had just been a little too perfect in terms of my family’s health — no one close to me had been touched by cancer, and no one had suffered anything that wasn’t easily smoothed out with medication. But this was it, this was the change, and no one could tell me otherwise. We waited 48 full hours to hear the results, and when my mother called to tell me she had cancer, she did so with a delicate coolness most people reserve for ordering a side salad. My mother has mastered a trait that as of yet eludes me — that skill of being able to mask all emotion for the sake of the other. Fast forward two and a half weeks later, and we’re all starting to be able to look people in the eye again. We’re able to handle being asked “how are you?” without seizing up and wondering what to say. It’s getting easier, but it sucks no less than the first day we found out.

be kind fighting battle plato

All of this is to say that I’m taking a respite from heavier posts because I need a little fluff in my life right now. I need to feel it’s okay to fill my rooms with pictures of pretty things, to have fun with a little nail polish or staring at some pretty sunnies, and to try to push my anxieties to the very recesses of my mind. I have no idea how prosperous I’ll be, but I still feel the need to give it the old college try. I’ll be spending my days reveling in the fact that I have my own most perfect mother with a spirit that will readily crush any malignant lump that dares interfere with her wildly more important plans. One thing for which I’m extremely grateful, however, is that this ordeal has only solidified the importance of my absolute favorite maxim from one smart cookie, Plato: “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” There is almost no greater danger than assuming you know the circumstances of someone else’s life, or that your own are more dire.

I love you all, and please excuse the shift in Ashinine in the coming weeks/months/time frame as of yet undetermined.

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3 Responses to [for the good times]

  1. bornbyariver says:

    I never wore nail polish until my mom got sick, so I understand where you are coming from. May the Lump be squashed quickly and thoroughly!

  2. Ron C says:

    Ashley: I’ll be praying for your Mom and you through these tough times. My Mom is a breast cancer survivor of over 20 years and I know how those early days go…take care.

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