Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Stockholm Syndrome?

I've been thinking a lot lately about this brain tumor journey that I've been on. It's crazy. What a huge diagnosis. It has completely evolved who I am.

For the longest time I've looked at this brain tumor/cancer as a fight, that I'm at war with this little growing nugget in my brain. But the truth is that Herman (my tumor) has taught me invaluable lessons. I've learned more about kindness, about love, generosity, grace, perseverance, tenacity, curiosity, patience, true happiness, and so much more. Instead of fighting Herman, I'm confused because I'm so grateful. It's such a dichotomy. I have so much love in my heart that I've been able to go through this and learn so much, and at the same time I'm at odds with the fact that the same thing that I appreciate so much is supposed to be my demise. It's confusing.

I was okay, as a person, before the brain tumor, but now I can say that I'm truly proud of who I am. I hope it's okay to say that I'm proud of myself - that it's not cocky or weird. It's just that sometimes, in my past, I haven't always been the nicest person, or the most kind, generous, or patient. I'm embarrassed to say that I went through a decent phase of superficiality while I was in college.

Anyway, I'm curious. I'm curious about how this is all going to play out. I feel more at ease with this cancer than I have ever been. But, I wonder, if I am okay with this brain cancer, is that giving up? I don't feel like I'm giving up. I'm still exercising, focusing on my strict diet, laughing, and living my life, but at the same time, if I'm not "fighting", am I accepting? And, is accepting bad?

I can't quite put my finger on this one. Is this healthy or do I have Stockholm Syndrome? I don't even know how to answer this question.


  1. Interesting post. My initial thought is that you are on the right path with how you're thinking about this. Since Herman is currently apart of your life, you might as well do the best thing you can, appreciate the blessings that are coming from the situation. You have a great attitude and so much gratitude. Those two things, plus the laughter that Marcel brings, might actually make Herman pick up and leave in the end!

  2. As much as we'd all like to think we are in control here on this earth ~ we really aren't! And one way or another we all have to figure that out and once we do, peace comes to us. It doesn't mean we have to give up but the sooner we learn that its not our will but the Lord's will (whatever trial or obstacle we face ~ and we ALL face them at some point ~ often times we face many) we become more loving, kind, generous, patient, grateful, more accepting, desiring more to serve others and forget ourselves. We look at life completely different.
    Here is a quote that I love ~ The harder the conflict the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheaply we esteem too lightly.
    You are one amazing young woman! This is a tough 'hard conflict' you are facing and fighting ~ don't ever, ever give up!

  3. I think about these things all the time too. My tumor, that will likely someday also be my demise, has made me feel so grateful and loving and happy and appreciative and patient and just more satisfied in life... and it's confusing and makes me feel a little nuts at times. But I also think a LOT about a quote that a chemo patient told Lance Armstrong on his first day of treatment: "You don't know it yet, but we're the lucky ones." I'm starting to truly feel like I'm a very lucky one. And you are too! We get to figure what is important in life NOW.

  4. They say when a person gets caught in a rip tide the person should not fight it but go with the flow. When fighting it, the person quickly gets exhausted for it's so powerful. When the person goes with the flow, the person eventually gets out of the rip. I think accepting is going with the flow and will help you get out of the rip tide.

  5. I think that everyone comes to terms with things in their own way, and that the path that brings you the best feeling is the right way to go for you. Personally, I think that your acceptance of Herman (love that you named him :)) and your gratitude of what this experience teaches you puts you in a positive state...and I think that the healing properties of positivity (in terms of body chemistry, hormones, ph balance, all of it) are highly underrated and certainly a worthwhile study. To fight is exhausting, to flow is to energize. Flow on, sister!


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