When i was diagnosed with breast cancer last year, i asked my sister, S – a 6 year breast cancer survivor – to help break the news to Mom. Her reaction set the world record for self-absorption. In fact, i wondered if she would simply implode*….
Earlier this week, i encountered it again. This time, because i was pretty sure she was jacked up on anti-anxiety drugs**, and because i’ve simply crossed my tolerance threshold, i decided to be a bit more direct with her about this behavior…
Stepping out of the cath lab to allow the nursing staff to do icky medical things to Mom’s incisions, she and i sat in a waiting area. We’d just learned that Mom will need double bypass.
S (shaking, on the verge of tears): I can’t take this. I don’t know what I’m going to do without her! I’m not ready to let her go!
daisyfae: You really need to think about what Mom needs. This isn’t about you right now.
S (working up some angry tears): You just don’t understand. I need her. None of you need her as much as I do. You’ll never understand.
daisyfae: Look, we’re all circling the drain! We can’t change the outcome, we can only affect the path. Freaking out is not doing anything good for the path…
S: I don’t want to talk about this! She’s not going to die!
daisyfae: Do me a favor. Rent The Lion King. Study the part about “the circle of life”. Let me know what you think.
* oh, if it could only happen this way!
** clearly, an insufficient dosage….