In the months of May-September I cried at least once a week; not a pretty cry, weepy, sad single tear cry, but bust out in heaving sobs for no good reason cry. I blamed it on stress, the seriousness of some life decisions that happened during those months, and the fact that I was trying to pretend that having a giant tumor was normal and that I was fine.
In considering surgery, I talked to a friend who had recently had the same surgery done. This was not only comforting to hear someone else’s experience, but also to be able to share and reflect the some of the effects of the tumor. As I shared about my sobs over nothing, she told me that she actually didn’t cry once when her tumor was giving her the worst trouble, which was way out of character for her. Once she had it removed, she was back to her weepy self. While there’s no scientific proof that it’s related, I mused that once I had mine removed maybe I would stop crying in the aisle of the store while trying to buy my nephew baby food.
It’s been less than a week, but I’ve yet to cry…and it’s weird (and I kind of miss the sobs). While I certainly don’t miss the public emotional breakdowns, there is a certain freedom in being unable to control your given emotional response to a situation. I like my privacy and my walls, I like knowing what everyone else is feeling while they are still guessing at what my facial expression means. I try to find meaning and beauty in everything in life…even if I stretch it a little too far, what harm can there be in finding beauty and meaning? An early reflection on this whole experience is that it allowed me to experience what life would be unguarded, unhinged, and dependent on others, and while it wasn’t my most favorite experience….I didn’t shrivel up and die a slow death of emotional exposure. I now know two things: I can survive the emotional turmoil of a giant tumor named Igor AND it’s kind of nice to be briefly emotionally unhinged.