Today was one of the best days of my life. October 19, 2007. Almost three weeks past my 33rd birthday. I spent it in Wisconsin, far from where I live in Temagami, Ontario. A cold, rainy October day, with wet oak leaves plastered to the ground. Big drops of water dropping from the pines, down the back of my neck, reminding me that I'm alive. Why was today wonderful? I spent the day with people I love, doing what we love. We spent the day together, learning about a shared passion (wilderness medicine). After that, five of us went for a run through the woods by a nearby lake. Someplace I'd never been before, which is always the best place to go for a run. There were deer in the woods, we saw their white tails in the distance. Amazing dinner, breaded pickerel with a juicy delicious orange for desert. Then, yes, a night of revelry. Einar's dried cod and Icelandic schnapps, Ann's Wisconsin cheese curds, and Edmund Fitzgerald Porter, brewed in Cleveland. Silly pictures of me and Becca, good talks with with Mike and Cabot and Tara and Jeff and Gabe and many more. I went to bed at 2, but couldn't sleep, the day was so good. I couldn't close my eyes, so here I am typing this to you at 3 am.
Today is the day I found out I have cancer.
Already I've learned so much.
I've learned I don't have to be afraid to say what needs to be said, just say it. Cabot says that's balls. I don't think it's balls, it's doing what needs to be done, even if that's scary. I learned that raindrops keep falling on your head to remind you that you're alive and that that is wonderful. I learned that there really is beauty in the small things, mist on the lake. I learned that I have what it takes. I really didn't know that before. I learned that my WMA friends, even though I don't know most of them terribly well, are the most wonderful friends ever. That must mean that all my other friends, the ones I've actually known for a few years, must be out-of-this-world wondeful. I can't wait to see them again, the guys at the fire department, the girls from Guelph. Not to mention Anna, the most wonderful woman in the world.
Yes, today is the most wonderful day in my life, so far. Today, after 33 years, I learned that I'm alive.