This sounds silly but each week I have television therapy in the form of Giuliana Rancic (and I drag my husband in with me.) Well not really, he watches it on his own with me. And it’s actually been sort of good for him too.
I only recently started watching the Giuliana & Bill show because it was on by accident one night. But the week I was diagnosed with cervical cancer, Giuliana was diagnosed with breast cancer. On tv. (She had really been diagnosed last year, but the show is just now catching up.)
I watched the first show with tears streaming down my face. She was in shock. She didn’t know how to tell anyone. She was mad at her girlie parts. She was walking around in a fog and all she could think about (like me) was cancercancercancercancercancer.
Then she looked through the television right into my crying face and said, “Tell everyone when YOU are ready.”
I knew I could take my time. Or not. I probably knew that anyway, but it helps when someone else says it. Even if it’s someone on tv.
Each week after, her life has paralleled mine but just the tiniest step ahead of me so that I could see in plain view how someone else is reacting to this news and know that my reaction is ok. Not that I needed confirmation so much as when you hear the word “cancer”, you sort of feel like a wild flailing mess on the inside which makes your reality the slightest bit cloudy, along with the ability to make any regular real-life decision whatsoever.
The words “clean margins” and “radiation” and even crazier words we hadn’t thought as an option like for her, “double mastectomy” and for me “hysterectomy.” Seriously, I feel like I should be sitting there watching the show with my notebook, taking notes.
There are other parallels that make me *snicker*.
Her mom’s name is also “Anna.” Mine has a New York accent instead of an Italian one but they both love feeding people back into health (and boy can my mom cook.)
My mom will be coming to stay with me too and my other family members will also probably descend upon us. This is what we do. We call it “descending.” We all rush in and try to help in one big whirlwind “WHOOOOOOOSH.”
After finding out about her cancer, Giuliana went on a trip where she found herself standing on top of a platform with a harness on. She was supposed to walk across this long log suspended in the sky. I was in my harness walking off a platform onto a zipline suspended from midair. Honestly, why we feel the need to scare ourselves further is beyond me. (Bill was right though, once you take the first two steps, the rest is easy peasy. Well, sort of.)
My husband, too, won The Apprentice.
But we did watch that one. If that counts.
Anyhoo. There are more but I can’t remember them all. My husband says he’s not at all like Bill but they both do things like write down pros and cons lists on legal pads and say things like “We’ll figure it out,” when they have no idea whatsoever what to say when their wives are crying next to them.
Tonight on the show Giuliana has her double mastectomy.
I know it’s going to be important for me to watch this as I get ready for my own surgery. I may not even watch it tonight, sometimes I DVR it and watch it when I’m ready.
It’s also nice to know that in real time, she’s recovering from all of this and even has a baby on the way, HOORAY! The future may not look the way she expected it to, but she sure rolled with the punches. I’m cheering her on as she heals (emotionally and physically) after kicking cancer in the balls like I’m about to.
I know that people wonder why other people chronicle such big, personal moments in their lives like this. For them it’s reality tv and for me it’s just on my little old blog. But I’m thankful she has.
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