Sunday, 20 January 2013



H.-P. Blavatsky interprets it by means of the Greek letters, as "the animation of the earth by the spirit of life".

I didn't pull a 360, but I got 365. That is the number not only in the calendar year but also the number of cc's of saline in my chest now. After three months of every other week visits to the plastic surgeon I am on my way to becoming a real girl again. Don't take offence to that statement, that is only from a personal naked point of view. After a mastectomy you feel like Humpty Dumpty, unsure how all the kings men will put you together again,  not only your body but your soul. A plastic piece of material inserted into your skin and blown up like a birthday balloon isn't exactly what you think is your gateway to that answer. This week as I went to what I hoped was my final expansion to my bionic breast I ended up waiting an hour and half. For some reason I was happy to sit in that waiting room alone. My life has gotten back to the new normal and off course that means work, home, cook, clean, wash, sleep and do it all again. As my life moves on and my illness becomes a thing of the past in some ways, I am grateful to just be able to be with myself and take time to reflect. Of course true to my nature that included a dozen texts and emails, god forbid I disconnect from the world for too long. They might forget me. I finally had my name called to go in. One final poke and I am done for now was all I could think. My plastic surgeon came in and as per usual greeted me with a welcoming smile and handshake and reminded me that I mattered. I highly recommend a occasional dose of validation tops you up for another day. We agreed that we would finish the fills on my expander today which meant a large amount of saline but I was good with that. I laid on the table and he searched with the magnet to find my port to insert the needle. I knew the needle would hurt more this time, and with so much poking in the last year I was pretty much done with things being inserted in me. The initial pinch and then the calm that its in. It had been a month since he last did this so I could really feel it. 40cc's , 50 cc's, keep going keep going 60 cc's. I think my chest is going to explode. It doesn't . That is it were done. Thank god I think. I know this is gonna hurt by tomorrow, and it did. The doctor has  someone with him who seem to be in training and he is showing her and talking about my chest and the work that has been done. With no sense of shyness anymore I look at her and say " your welcome to touch them". She does. I am happy to help. Sometimes things that happen to you are so surreal that you just go for it. Never in a million years did I think I would be in that situation. Life is a funny.
So once again, being good ol Sondria, I am in a thrift store with some friends the next day. My chest is hurting and I walk to what I think is my friend and start rubbing the softball in my chest and  and say "just feel how hard it is". I look up. The poor woman is trying to ignore me, her eyes turned as to not make contact with the freak asking her to touch her boob. I say I am so sorry and run away to the other side of the store killing myself laughing. Now that is a memory.
Right after my surgery this fall I had Malin take a pic of me with my newly started construction. Once again on first glance of the pics I am shocked. I had chosen to show both sides of my chest as neither were original to me. What I noticed about the pic was that I still retained a sexuality, this was evident due to my slight uncomfortableness with the nudity. I talked to Malin and as she said its cause there is a breast there. I struggled with posting it on here but I think its an honest representation of my journey that you all are reading and watching. I can talk about it day and night but seeing it creates clarity not only for myself but for those reading this blog who are either going through the same thing or are just curious about my story.
I can't end this blog without saying thank you to the women who told me recently that they read my blog. That they are moved by what I write and are able to take something away from it. The acknowledgement fills me. Sometimes we do things in isolation unaware of the greater impact.
There was an article last week in the paper about living in the present after or with cancer. I think we have to honour the past, to learn and move forward with purpose from our experience. Words like learning and forward being key. The secret to unlocking your life.
I want to thank Malin Enstrom once again for documenting my journey with photography with grace and clarity in the images she takes. The day she took these I was surprised how shy I was with opening my blouse. We took them spontaneously, and in the rain and fog. I will be forever indebted to Malin for giving me courage. Courage that I never had. Also lastly I would like the shadows from the trees for making me look like I had abs.

Please do not crop or alter these pictures without the permission of the photographer, Malin Enstrom. And please, always leave her copyright © 2012 Malin Enstrom.

1 comment:

  1. Hello Sondria, I was in awe when I read your blog earlier this week. It was good that we skyped and talked about it and other things going on in our lives too. We discussed how it felt for you to write and that you've readers from all over the world, So cool! What comes across to me is how well you know yourself, your needs, your capabilities and how you reflect on all the choices you have had to make and continue to make. I was rolling on the floor with laughter while you shopped in the thrift shop with your friends, I got the visual! I look at the picture you attached and yes there are breasts and abs, but what draws my eye is your face, your smile, the short and sassy hair, the "geez am I really doing this", grin. Combined with the delicate ambiance of the fog and forest, Malin, brings you to the photo with a gentle sensuality that shines through. Bravo ma belle, on et fiers! So proud of you, hugs, ta soeur - Geraldine