Bent But Not Broken


It's 4:30 and I am wide awake...nothing new. I've had this post on my mind for a few days. So much has happened within the past year. September of last year was when all hell broke loose for me. My life did a complete 90 degree turn in a matter of days. Ever see the movie "The Perfect Storm"? There were days when I felt like I was in a tiny boat with the huge wave coming and all I coud do was hold on. I've been hiking a lot in the state park near me that I love so much. I hiked on Friday and just could not soak up enough of the stillness and beauty I was surrounded by. Along the trail as I was walking, I looked up to see this tree with the sharpest bend in it's trunk from some type of damage years ago. That crooked trunk had small new growth shooting out of it and had sharply turned at some point to the opening at the top of many surrounding trees to find it's way to the sun. I felt so much like that tree At that moment in that forest, all I could think about were the days I sat in the infusion room at the cancer center looking out of the window and dreaming of being somewhere else while going thru treatment. I was so profoundly grateful and humbled at that moment standing in the woods.  I've lost pieces of myself emotionally and physically. I have had to bend and twist to find the sun again. I am not the same person. There is a certain amount of carefree existence I lost but by the same token I have gained such a strong awareness of the beauty and cycle of life and just how quickly it can spin on a dime. My cancer journey/batlle started almost 4 years ago with my beloved husband being diagnosed. I have never known such loss and felt so helpless as we fought to ease his suffering and keep him here with me. Life is funny sometimes in how it plays out. My journey with him prepared me in so many ways for what was to come with my own diagnosis. I can't imagine how differently things could have played out if I had not had the knowledge gained from my experience with him. I don't know what the future holds, but like that tree, I will keep bending and turning to find the sun until I can't anymore. Thinking of you all and wishing each of you the strength and courage to reach your own sunshine.....Hugs, MBent But Not Broken


  • Steelkiwi686
    Steelkiwi686 Member Posts: 73 Member

    Thank you for this , it was beautifully written and a timely reminder.

  • nuc
    nuc Member Posts: 44 Member
    I'm not so great with words,

    I'm not so great with words, so I'm sure someone will reply much more eloquently then I can, but I'll try.

    I feel what you feel and I and my wife have had many moments since her diagnosis, where we felt with all our beings, of being in the moment and truly being "alive".  Not just alive......but alive!  Her dx has changed her and us.  We also lost some of the carefree existence you speak of, but we also gained an amount of pure internal appreciation for what is around us, and for life.

    Life is for living.


  • SandiaBuddy
    SandiaBuddy Member Posts: 1,381 Member

    Thanks for your post.  Personally, I always find some solace in the retreat to nature and living in the present.

  • ellend
    ellend Member Posts: 109 Member
    Love your post

    I love the sentiment in your post. We have all been changed by this awful disease and it is good to remember to keep seeking the sun as long as possible. We are heading for Utah and Zion. We love the beauty of the place and I will keep your post in mind as we hike the trails in the park.



  • Trubrit
    Trubrit Member Posts: 5,800 Member
    I also had a profound tree experience

    I am happy for your happiness, Mojo.  

    There is life in nature, and we are a part of it. 



  • Annabelle41415
    Annabelle41415 Member Posts: 6,742 Member
    edited October 2019 #7

    Somehow this disease changes us in ways we can't even express or understand.  You have been through a lot in the last several years.  Just keep embracing nature and the beauty that it can hold.  It is truly amazing at how the world around us is so complex, but can say nothing and make us smile.  Wishing you the best.


  • Kazenmax
    Kazenmax Member Posts: 463 Member
    Similar experience

    Just this past weekend I had a similar epiphany. My husband and I traveled to participate in my dear father-in-law’s 90th Birthday. We had to fly and I worried about that... then we were going to see all this family... a lot of whom I had not see since before my original diagnosis. My body has changed...I’ve aged so much. And then there’s waking into the room where you dont really know a lot of people but you just know they are aware of your situation....

    I looked over at my father-in-law and recognized  the love in the room. No one cared how it was that I was there, they were just happy that I WAS there.

    We looked at pictures of so many relatives who are no longer with us. There were great stories about many members of the family. I saw pictures of when I first joined this family and I thought to myself....why did I waste so much time worrying about my weight, my looks, all that silly stuff. What matters is that I’m still here to tell the old stories to the young people. LOL. 

    sending love and strength to all. Live in the moment!


  • AnneO1965
    AnneO1965 Member Posts: 182 Member
    What a beautiful post, and it

    What a beautiful post, and it's something that I truly needed to hear. Thank you

  • TinaO
    TinaO Member Posts: 3
    edited October 2019 #10
    Inspiring and Beautiful

    Thank you for this post. My husband is going through it right now and your post resonated deeply with me. Your post is filled with hope, change, and inspiration. 

  • beaumontdave
    beaumontdave Member Posts: 1,280 Member
    Good stuff, M. I hear my self

    Good stuff, M. I hear my self in many of your words, especially about September being that month of memories and pivotal moments. Her birthday, our anniversary, my diagnosis blowing up her b-day, now time and distance from the beginning, and from the last cancer surgery. It's a month of melancholy, as I've mentioned. But even as all that runs around in my head, the SoCal weather eases up, nights get cool, the angle of the sun loses glare and brings the colors up. Being in a pass, I get to drive less then ten miles up in the tall foothills to a place so different, Oak Glen, where Fall starts earlier with the apple harvest, lots of orchards, sheds, food, and walking trails. It's beautiful and peaceful during the week, and escaping there is a simple pleasure, even if it comes with the echoes of her voice, and all we would share there. I'm bent too, in directions and ways I didn't imagine. Time, toil, and treatment have softened and slowed my roll, but have opened my senses to taking more of it all in, to just be still, to look and listen. I guess when change barges in and scrambles your existence, it creates more chances to step outside who you thought you were. It hurts like hell, but it's not without opportunities to be better in other ways, and find other meanings to things in life. And I'm still here..........................................................Dave