Do You Have a Great Story to Tell?

October 4, 2012 at 3:36 pm , by

 

For our second annual Personal Essay Contest, we want to hear about a memorable moment in your life — the day, or the hour, or the second that changed everything. We urge you to be poignant, reflective, funny. Make us howl with laughter. Make us blubber in our cubicles (we can take it!).

Ladies’ Home Journal is a community that shares stories — and we’re dying to hear yours. If you win our essay contest, we’ll give you $3,000 and the chance to have your essay published in the Journal. You’re free to interpret the topic in whatever way you like, but remember that we value creativity and clarity above all.

Essays will be judged on their emotional power, originality, and the quality of their prose. They should be no more than 2,000 words and ideally typed or written in a Microsoft Word document.

You can enter the contest by e-mailing your submission as an attachment (with your name, address, phone number, and e-mail address) to LHJessaycontest@meredith.com or by mailing a copy to Personal Essay Contest, Ladies’ Home Journal, 805 Third Ave., 26th Fl., New York, NY 10022. Entries are due by December 7, 2012.

Visit lhj.com/essaycontest for official rules and answers to frequently asked questions.

(Photo credit: Flickr user jonas.lowgren)

2 Responses to “Do You Have a Great Story to Tell?”

  1. FBC…

    OK LADIES – LET ME SEE A SHOW OF HANDS OUT THERE THAT’S FIGHTING CANCER OR HAVE DEFEATED THIS DAMN DISEASE…

    I’M NEW AT THIS SO BEAR WITH ME – AFTER DELAYING A MAMOGRAM FOR A YEAR – CAUSE THE INTERNET SAID SO… NEWS MEDIA SAID SO… AND EVEN NEWSPAPER AND MAGAZINES SAID SO… EVERY TWO YEARS IS OK – WTF DO THEY KNOW – ANYWAY HAD A MAMOGRAM IN OCTOBER, 2011 – AND AS USUAL BECAUSE I HAVE DENSE BREASTS – I WAS CALLED TO DO ANOTHER EXAM – NOT UNUSUAL FOR ME –

    OK – SECOND ONE – RIGHT BREAST AND BY THE WAY WHEN I HAD MY FIRST EXAM I WENT BEHIND THE SCREEN AND POINTED AT THIS ‘WHITE THING’ AND ASKED ‘WHAT IS THIS’ – THE TECH REPLIED – ‘ OH THAT IS DENSE BREAST TISSUE’ – SO I’M THINKIN’ OK – HAVE HEARD THIS BEFORE – NO BIG DEAL –

    SO – ON THE SECOND GO AROUND THE RADIOLOGIST COMES IN – NOT LOOKING TOO HAPPY – SAYS – THERE IS A MASS – THAT WASN’T THERE LAST YEAR (NO KIDDING – I WASN’T THERE LAST YEAR) LET’S JUST SEND YOU TO A BREAST SPECIALIST/SURGEON TO CHECK IT OUT – NO BIG DEAL – MAYBE JUST A SACK OF FLUID – OK – NO BIG DEAL!

    MAKE APPOINTMENT AND IT’S NOT EVEN CLOSE – TWO WEEKS AWAY – I’M ALREADY ANXIOUS AND SCARED TO DEATH – THINKING WTH! …FINALLY GET TO THE BREAST SURGEON – LOVELY LADY – SPEAKS IN A SOFT TONE – GIVES ME A THOROUGH EXAM AND THEN PROCEEDS TO TELL ME IN HER OPINION – I BELIEVE IT’S BREAST CANCER – I’M THINKING – WHAT? MY FIRST WORD TO HER WAS “FUCK” – DR. SAID – I HEAR THAT A LOT – SO IT’S NOT JUST ME –

    SCHEDULES ME FOR A BIOPSY – NOW MIND YOU – MY HEAD IS SPINNING – THIS SHIT WAS NOT EVEN ON MY RADAR – JUST FINISHED CLOSING TWO BUSINESSES AND WAS CONCENTRATING ON OUR BANQUET FACILITY AND OFF SITE CATERING – WHICH IS DOING VERY WELL – FINALLY ABLE TO SEE DAYLIGHT – KINDA GOING WITH THE FLOW – LIFE IS GOOD…

    BREAST CANCER – REALLY – NOT IN A MILLION YEARS WOULD I HAVE THOUGHT THAT I WOULD HAVE THIS CRAP – REALLY?

    IT’ STILL DOESN’T REGISTER – NOT EVEN WHEN I TYPE IT –

    SO WE SCHEDULE A MEETING AFTER THE BIOPSY SO THE DR. CAN GIVE ME THE DEAILS – WAITED FOR HER CALL FOR THE RESULTS – FINALLY ON TUESDAY – ELECTION DAY NOVEMBER 8TH AND (OUR ANNIVERSARY) DR. CALLED– GOOD – 1.5 cm – STAGE 1 – WILL REQUIRE FIVE DAYS OF RADIATION – DR. TELLS ME THAT SHE WILL INSERT A DEVISE THAT WILL DELIVER THE RADIATION AND WE SCHEDULE THE SURGERY – MONDAY – NOVEMBER 28TH –

    OK SO DR. WANTS AN MRI – JUST TO BE ON THE SAFE SIDE – SO FAR I’VE HAD TWO MAMOGRAMS – ONE ULTRASOUND – NOW AND MRI – WHAT THE HELL…

    MAKE APPOINTMENT TO HAVE MRI – I’VE HAD ONE BEFORE – ON MY KNEE – SO NO BIG DEAL – RIGHT – WRONG!

    FIRST OF ALL – IT WAS RAINING ON THE DAY OF APPOINTMENT – TRAFFIC IS JUST CRAZY – EVERY PERSON THAT COULD BE OUT HERE DRIVING TEN MILES SLOWER THAN THE SPEED LIMIT WAS OUT – PAIN IN THE ASS – OK GET TO APPOINTMENT – I’M THINKING I’M EARLY – 8:30AM – RIGHT – WRONG…APPOINTMENT WAS AT 8:00AM – NOW I NEVER WAKE UP BEFORE NINE OR NINE THIRTY ON A USUAL MORNING – WHY IN THE HELL WOULD I MAKE AN APPOINTMENT FOR 8:00AM –

    WOMEN IN FRONT OF ME – HAVING DIFFICULTY WITH PAYMENT – MY TOLERANCE IS REALLY LOW – I HAVE NO PATIENCE – REALLY? ANYWAY – MY TURN AND THE YOUNG RECEPTIONIST IS A LITTLE MIFFED WITH ME – I’M THINKING I’M OK – AND SHE IS A LITTLE UPSET THAT I AM A HALF HOUR LATE
    SO – SHE SAID SHE WOULD ASK IF ‘THEY’ COULD FIT ME IN – OR DO I WANT TO RESCHEDULE – HELL NO – I’M HERE – LET’S JUST GET THIS DONE –
    FINALLY FILL OUT ANOTHER STACK OF FORMS – AGAIN – CAN’T THESE DAMN DOCTORS AND OTHER MEDICAL PEOPLE HAVE ALL THIS DAMN DATA IN ONE PLACE – THIS IS REALLY REDUNDANT STUFF –

    FILL OUT PAPERWORK – YOUNG PERSON ASKES ME TO FOLLOW HER AND I GO THRU A LABRINTH OF HALLWAYS AND FINALLY WE COME TO OUR DESTINATION – SHE SAID TO TAKE OFF MY TOP AND SHOES AND PUT ON THIS GOWN AND ASKED IF I WANTED TO TAKE OFF MY SLACKS – NO THANK YOU – I REPLIED – I’LL THEM LEAVE ON – OK – SO I’M READY – YOUNG TECH SAYS TO LIE ON TABLE SO SHE CAN ADMINISTER THE IV – THE WHAT? AN IV? NOBODY SAID ANYTHING ABOUT AN IV – I’M NOT SCARED MIND YOU – JUST CURIOUS – COULDN’T SOMEONE HAVE TOLD ME ABOUT THIS SHIT FIRST – WARN ME? SOMETHING – I ASKED – AN IV? FOR WHAT – SHE REPLIED – THE RESONATING FLUID? THE WHAT! OK SO I TOOK IT LIKE A BIG GIRL – WITH THE IV!

    OK – SO LET’S JUST GET THIS OVER WITH – NOW MIND YOU – I HAVE HAD ONE BIG CUP OF COFFEE – HIGH TEST – ON AN EMPTY STOMACH AND I’M ALL WHACKED OUT OF SHAPE FROM DRIVING 50 MINUTES TO GET THERE ON TIME – NOT THAT I WAS – SO IF MY BLOOD PRESSURE WAS UP – THEY SHOULD HAVE GIVEN ME SOME ‘DOWN TIME’ TO CALM DOWN – NOT THAT I’M HYPER – I’M JUST SAYIN….

    SO I SEE THIS BED THING – WITH TWO CUPS FOR MY ‘GIRLS’ – TECH SAYS TO LIE FACE DOWN AND PLACE MY BREASTS INTO THE CUPS – ADJUST MYSELF – GET COMFORTABLE AND JUST RELAX – REALLY? ALSO SHE HANDS ME A PANIC BUTTON – A WHAT? – SHE REPLIED – IN CASE I WANTED TO STOP THE PROCEDURE –

    NAHHH… I SAID – LET’S JUST GET THIS OVER WITH – SO I PLACE “MYSELF” – FACE DOWN AND – GET RELAXED – SORTA – ASKES ME IF I WANT TO LISTEN TO SOME MUSIC – SURE – I SAID – CLASSICAL WILL BE JUST FINE – SO SHE PLACES THE HEAD PHONES ON ME AND I’M READY TO GO – I’M NOT SCARED – JUST A LITTLE UNSETTLED – OK – I CAN DO THIS – NO BIG DEAL – RIGHT – WRONG…

    FIRST OF ALL – WE DO A TRIAL RUN – PLACE ME INTO THE ‘TUBE THING’ – TECH SAYS – ARE YOU OK – I’M FEELING FINE – THANK YOU – THEN – SHE SAID – YOU’RE GONNA FEEL A LITTLE PRESSURE – REALLY? LIKE WHAT – AND THEN – HOLY SHIT – THEN SHE APPLIES THE PRESSURE AND I FEEL LIKE I’M IN A DRAINAGE PIPE – SO I ASKED HER TO PULL ME OUT AND LET ME ADJUST MY RIGHT ARM – IT WAS KINDA’ GETTING SQUEEZED – OK – SO WE ADJUST IT AND THEN BACK INTO THE TUBE – THE WHOLE TIME – I’M SAYING – I CAN DO THIS – I’M NOT A WUSS – THIS IS NO BIG DEAL –

    MUSIC STARTS AND I’M DOING JUST FINE – I CAN DO THIS – RIGHT?

    THEN TECH SAYS ‘YOU’RE GONNA HEAR SOME BANGING NOISES” OK I SAID – LET’S JUST GET THIS OVER WITH – THEN – FOR THE LOVE OF GOD – BANG BANG BANG BANG – LOWER TONES BANG BANG BANG BANG – THIS BIG DAMN MACHINE IS PISSED – IT WAS AN ANGRY BIG YELLOW MACHINE AND IT WAS PISSED – AND I WAS IN THE BELLY OF THIS BEAST – WTF!

    WHY DON’T THEY (MEDICAL PERSONNEL) WARN YOU – THIS SOB IS PISSED! AND I’M JUST TRYING TO BREATH NORMALLY AND I CAN FEEL THE SIDES OF THIS SOB AND I CAN HARDLY BREATH – I’M THINKING HOLY SHIT – WHAT IS THIS – AND I’M THINKING I CAN DO THIS – NO BIG DEAL – RIGHT? WRONG…

    THEN TECH SAYS ARE YOU OK? I’M THINKING – WHAT THE HELL DO I TELL THIS CHILD – I’M 64 YEARS OLD AND I’M ABOUT TO FLIP OUT – REALLY? I SAID IN MY BEST BRAVADO – I’M OK – LET JUST GET THIS OVER WITH – SO SHE SAYS – YOU WILL HEAR FIVE MINUTES OF BANGING AND THEN A LULE AND THEN FIVE MINUTES MORE – SO IT STARTS – BANG BANG BANG BANG – AND I ASKED THE TECH – WHY THE HELL DO YOU GIVE ME HEAD PHONES? WHEN I CAN’T HEAR SHIT OVER THIS BANGING NOISE – SO IT CONTINUES – BANG BANG BANG BANG – LOWER TONES – BANG BANG BANG BANG – AND I’M LYING HERE SO FEAKED OUT THAT I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO NEXT – I’M TRYING LIKE HELL TO STAY CALM – WHILE THIS DAMN MACHINE IS SCREAMING BANG BANG BANG BANG – LOWER TONES – BANG BANG BANG BANG – SO THE TECH SAYS ARE YOU OK? AND I’M NOT MY BIG BRAVE SELF AND SAID HELL NO – GET ME OUT OF THIS DAMN THING – SHE SAID – REALLY? HELL YES I SAID – GET ME OUT OF THIS DAMN MACHINE –

    SO I APOLOGIZE TO THIS CHILD – AND SAID I AM NOT A WUSS – BUT THIS DAMN THING SHOULD COME WITH A WARNING – DAMN! YOU MUST WARN PEOPLE ABOUT THIS THING – IT IS SCARY – I MEAN REALLY SCARY SHIT –

    JUST ONE QUESTIONS – DID A MAN DESIGN/INVENT THIS DAMN THING – CAUSE IF HE HAD TO PUT HIS BALLS INTO THIS THING – THERE WOULD BE VELVET CUPS AND A BIG SCREEN TV AND A BAR IN THIS DAMN THING – REALLY !

    WITH ALL THE TECHNOLOGY – THIS IS THE BEST THEY CAN DO? SO THE LOVELY TECH SAID LET ME RESCHEDULE YOU FOR AN OPEN MRI – I SAID A WHAT? AN OPEN MRI – DID I HAVE AN OPTION – SHE SAID “SURE” – AND I REPLIED – “WHO THE HELL TOLD ME THAT THERE WAS AN OPTION” – SHE DIDN’T SAY ANYTHING – I THINK SHE KNEW I WAS PISSED – SHE ALSO SAID – IT’S LIKE A HAMBURGER BUN – OPEN – “YOU KNOW” – AND I SAID – “LIKE I’M THE PIECE OF DEAD MEAT IN THE MIDDLE – OF THIS BUN – IS THAT IT?”

    SHE REALLY DIDN’T KNOW WHAT TO SAY – AGAIN – SO I RESCHEDULED TO GO TO PAUL BROWN STADIUM – WHERE THE BIG BOYS GO – TO GET MY MRI – NEXT WEEK –

    TODAY – FRIDAY – HAD TO REGISTER A THE HOSPITAL – BETHESDA NORTH – NOW MIND YOU – I’M NOT IN THE BEST OF MOODS – AND THEY ASK YOU NO LESS THAN TEN TIMES – THE SPELLING OF YOUR NAME – DATE OF BIRTH AND YES – YOU HAVE TO FILL OUT MORE PAPERS – AND AGAIN I ASK – WHY CAN’T THIS STUFF BE DONE ON-LINE OR KEEP THIS INFO IN A GIANT COMPUTER DATA BASE – IS IT ME OR IS THIS JUST REDUNDANT STUFF…NURSES WERE VERY NICE – AS USUAL – TAKE OFF MY TOP AND BRA – PUT ON A GOWN – THEN AN ASIAN DR. COMES IN FOR A ‘PHYSICAL’ – SHE COULDN’T HAVE BEEN MORE DISINTERESTED THAN THE STETHSCOPE SHE WAS WEARING – “YOU CALL THIS A PHYSICAL?” CHECK MY HEART – TAKE A DEEP BREATH – ASK ME MY NAME – AGAIN – AND ASKS ME – WHY I’M HERE – MAYBE I’M BE OVERLY CRITICAL – BUT THE REUNDANCY IS FRUSTRATING – THIS WHOLE DAMN THING IS FRUSTRATING…

    SO I HAVE TO HAVE AN MRI – OPEN – PAUL BROWN STADIUM – FIRST APPT. NOVEMBER 22, 2011 – IT’S A TUESDAY – TOOK A VALIUM – THEY’RE NOT GONNA GET ME A SECOND TIME – FILL OUT MORE PAPERWORK – MEET THE TECH – ROBIN – NICE YOUNG LADY – ASK A LOT OF QUESTIONS – ABOUT THE WEATHER – HOLIDAYS AND SUCH – KINDA SMALL TALK TO CALM ME A LITTLE – IT WORKED – SHE WAS GREAT – OK SO WE GET THE IV GOING AND THEN WE ADJUST THE ‘GIRLS’ – AND I HAVE A SMALL PILLOW FOR MY HEAD – NOW MIND YOU – I’M FACE DOWN – COULD ONLY MOVE MY HEAD SORTA ON THE SIDE – TRIED LIKE HELL NOT TO MOVE – SO WE START – HEAD PHONES – WHAT A JOKE – SO WE’RE GONNA START WITH ONE MINUTE – THEN TWO – THEN FOUR – THEN EIGHT – I’M DOING OK – THEN AS LUCK WOULD HAVE IT – THE “MACHINE” STOPPED – REALLY? A MILLION DOLLAR MACHINE – MADE BY GE – (MY OLE’ ALMA MATER) AND IT JUST STOPPED – ROBIN SAID “YOU’RE GONNA HATE ME BUT YOU HAVE TO COME BACK TOMORROW SO WE CAN DO THIS AGAIN” – ARE YOU SHITTIN’ ME? – TOMORROW IS THE DAY BEFORE THANKSGIVING – I’M A CATERER – AND I’M BUSY – REALLY?

    SO WE (MY BELOVED HUSBAND AND I) TREK DOWN TO PAUL BROWN STADIUM – GOOD NEWS – NOT A LOT OF TRAFFIC – THANK GOD – BECAUSE IT’S THE DAY BEFORE THANKSGIVING – OK – THIS TIME I BRING GOODIES FOR THE NURSE/TECH AND THE SECURITY PEOPLE – WHAT THE HELL – LET’S MIX A LITTLE BUSINESS IN THIS SITUATION – MIGHT GET A CATERING JOB OUT OF IT – YA’ NEVER KNOW –

    SO – ROBIN ASKES ME TO GET UNDRESSED – GET THE GOWN ON – I CALL IT THE MAHALAIA JACKSON GOWN – BIG ENOUGH FOR THREE OR FOUR CHOIR PEOPLE – SO I’M READY – ROBIN IS KINDA AGITATED – THE “MACHINE” IS DOWN – WTF! SO THIS SERVICE MAN COMES IN – HE SAYS IT NOT HIS JOB – (WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE THAT SAY – IT’S NOT MY JOB – DUDE YOU SHOULD BE LUCKY THAT YOU EVEN HAVE A JOB) ANYWAY – I ASKED WHAT WAS WRONG – ROBIN SAID I BELIVE IT’S THE CIRCUIT BREAKER – WHILE THIS SERVICE PERSON IS GRUMBLING ABOUT ‘IT’S NOT MY JOB AND IT’S THE DAY BEFORE THANKSGIVING AND I DON’T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THIS MACHINE” I’M ASKING WHERE THE HELL THE CIRCUIT BREAKER BOX IS LOCATED – ROBIN AND THE SERVICE DUDE ARE CRAWLINGAROUND THE UNDER BELLY OF THIS BEAST AND I’M LOOKING FOR THE BREAKER BOX – FOUND IT! ROBIN COMES OVER AND SHE SAYS – THAT’S NOT THE RIGHT ONE – SO I’M OPENING DOORS THAT LOOK LIKE SERVICE DOORS THAT SAY – DO NOT ENTER – AND I’M CHECKING IT OUT FOR BREAKER BOXES – FOUND IT! SO ROBIN OPENS THE DOOR AND SURE ENOUGH THIS BIG DAMN MACHINE IS SHUT DOWN BY A LITTLE BREAKER – SERIOUSLY? SO ROBIN SAYS – WHAT SHOULD WE DO? I’M SAYIN’ SWITCH THE DAMN THING OVER – IT WON’T GO – I SAID LET ME TRY – SWITCHED IT BACK AND FORTH UNTIL IT FINALLY CLICKED – TAA DAA! WHAT A WOMEN CAN DO WHEN SHE IS MOTIVATED…

    SO ROBIN AND I GO BACK INTO THE MRI ROOM – I GET ADJUSTED – AGAIN – HEAD PHONES AND MUSIC – SORTA – THEN WE START – ONE MINUTE – OH BY THE WAY WHEN ROBIN SAID I WOULD HAVE TO COME BACK – SHE SAID MAYBE ONLY 8 MINUTES – WELL SHE FIBBED – I WAS THERE THE FULL FORTY FIVE MINUTES – SHE RAN THE TEST FROM THE START – OK, SO WE DO THE ONE MINUTE THING – THEN TWO – THEN FOUR – THEN EIGHT – THEN – YOU GUESSED IT – “IT BROKE” – THE MACHINE TRIPPED ANOTHER BREAKER – I AM ABOUT TO LOSE IT – SHE FELT REALLY BAD – SO SHE SAID I THINK THE RADIOLOGIST CAN GET WHAT HE NEEDS FROM THIS DATA – GOD I HOPE SO – DR. SAID SHE WOULD CALL ME WITH RESULTS AFTER THE HOLIDAY – THANK YOU VERY MUCH – STILL HAVEN’T TOLD A LOT OF PEOPLE – NOT EVEN MY MOTHER – JUST MY SISTERS AND A GOOD FRIEND WHO HAS HAD BREAST CANCER.

    SO DR. CALLS WITH NEWS – IT’S LIKE A KICK IN THE GUT – THERE IS ANOTHER SMALL TUMOR DEEPER IN MY BREAST – 1.2cm MAYBE – SO THE DAY AFTER THANKSGIVING – I’M SCHEDULED FOR ANOTHER BIOPSIE – I CAN’T TELL YOU HOW MUCH I APPRECIATE THIS DR. SHE IS THE BEST – SO WE DO THE BIOPSIE AND I’M KINDA SORE – BUT THE DRUGS HELP – I’M JUST SAYIN’ – BIOPSIE RESULTS – ANOTHER GLOB OF CANCER – BOY THIS IS REALLY PISSING ME OFF –

    BUT WE ARE STILL SCHEDULED FOR OPERATION ON THE 28TH – THANK GOD – I JUST WANT THIS CRAP OUT OF ME – GOOD NEWS WAS A CANCELLATION FOR MONDAY AND I WAS ABLE TO GET IN EARLIER – 7:00AM INSTEAD OF 3:00PM – ARRIVED AT THE HOSPITAL ABOUT 6:50AM – NOW MIND YOU – I DON’T TYPICALL GET UP UNTIL 8-9AM – SO THIS IN ITSELF IS A MAJOR FEAT – GET IN THE ROOM – GET SETTLED AND OH BY THE WAY – I TOOK TWO VALIUM BEFORE I ARRIVED – NOT GONNA GET ME A THIRD TIME – ALSO HAD TO APPLY A LANICANE CREAM TO MY BREAST TO NUMB IT FOR SOMETHING OR OTHER – DO I HAVE TO DO THEIR JOB TOO? SO THE NURSES ARE MAKING SMALL TALK – HOLIDAY – JOB – WHY I’M HERE – SO TWO NURSES TAKE ME TO WHAT I’M THINKING IS THE OPERATING ROOM – OH NO! –

    I’M IN THIS SMALL ROOM – JANITOR’S CLOSET – AND A DR. APPEARS AND TELLS ME HIS NAME AND I’M NOT EVEN LISTENING – SORTA OUT OF IT – KINDA LIKE LA LA LAND – HE TELLS ME HE IS GOING TO INJECT SOME DYE INTO MY BREAST – THAT IS WHY I HAD THE LANICANE CRÈME – THEN HE SAID IT’S GONNA STING A LITTLE AND MAYBE A BURN – HOLY MOTHER OF GOD – HE HAD TO DO FOUR SHOTS – AND I ASKED AFTER ONE – DO YOU HAVE A BULLET I CAN BITE ON – JESUS CHRIST THAT HURTS – THEN HE SAID JUST BREATH THRU IT – WHAT? HOW IN THE HELL CAN YOU BREATH WHEN THIS PERSON IS SHOOTING YOU UP WITH THESE EVIL SHOTS – DAMN IT TO HELL – THAT HURT – THEN WHEN HE WAS DONE – HE APOLOGIZED FOR THE PAIN – I SAID NEXT TIME LET ME DO IT TO YOU – BUT IN YOU BALLS INSTEAD – BOY WAS I OUT OF IT –

    SO AFTER I BITCHED A LITTLE (LITTLE? A LOT) TOLD NURSES I DON’T LIKE SURPRISES AND THAT MY DEAR FRIENDS WAS ONE BIG ASS SURPRISE! IT’S ABOUT 9:30AM AND IT’S TIME TO GO INTO OPERATING ROOM – MET THE ANASTIGIOLGIST – TIME TO GO NITE NITE – AND DR. HERNANDEZ MADE THE SIGN OF THE CROSS ON MY FOREHEAD AND SAID “GOD BLESS YOU” AND SEE YOU SOON – THAT’S ALL I REMEMBER – THANK GOD – IN RECOVERY A MALE NURSE WAS SHOVING ICE DOWN MY THROAT – WHEN I WOKE UP – I SAID – WHY THE FUCK DOES MY THROAT HURT? THEY REPLIED – “SHE’S AWAKE” – NO REALLY – WHY DOES MY THROAT HURT – WELL THE DR. SAID – YOU WERE HARD TO INCUBATE – SO WE HAD TO PUT A TUBE DOWN YOUR THROAT TO HELP YOU BREATH – DAMN – THAT HURT – AGAIN – SO IT’S ABOUT 12:00 AND I’M FEELING OK – SORTA – AND THEY ASK IF I WANNA GO HOME – AND I REPLIED – HELL YES – I’M READY – SO WE WERE HOME ABOUT 2:00PM AND I WAS SACKED OUT UNTIL THE NEXT MORNING – WOKE ONLY TO TAKE A PAIN PILL – WHICH I HIGHLY RECOMMEND – AND GO TO THE BATH ROOM – SEE YA ON TUESDAY –

    TUESDAY WAS A BLURR – REALLY FELT LIKE CRAP – SORE – AGITATED – JUST PISSED IN GENERAL – TRIED TO GET COMFORTABLE – NOT GONNA HAPPEN – DR. SAID BEFORE I LEFT THAT THEY TOOK SOME LYMPH NODES AND WOULD HAVE RESULTS IN A COUPLE OF DAYS –

    WEDNESDAY CAME AND I WAS FEELING GOOD – WENT TO THE HALL AND TRIED TO CONDUCT SOME BUSINESS AND REALLY FELT OK – HAD TO FINALLY TELL MY MOM – DIDN’T TELL ANYONE UNTIL THIS CRAP WAS OVER – THE OPERATION I MEAN – THIS MAY TAKE A FEW MONTHS TO FINALLY BE OVER BUT CALLED MOM AND WENT OVER FOR WHAT SHE THOUGHT WAS LUNCH –

    NOW MIND YOU – MY DEAR MOTHER IS 83 – AND STILL IN REALATIVELY GOOD HEALTH – SO I CAME IN AND WE SAT DOWN – OR RATHER I SAT DOWN – THIS WOMEN DOESNT KNOW THE MEANING OF SITTING STILL – SHE IS LEBANESE AND OUR PEOPLE DO NOT REST WELL – SO I’M WATCHING HER FLIT FROM PANTY TO KITCHEN TO STOVE TO FRIDGE AND THEN I FINALLY SAID – MOM – HOLD STILL – I’VE GOT SOMETHING TO TELL YOU – SHE SAID – I KNOW THERE IS SOMETHING WRONG – CAUSE YOU HAVEN’T BEEN YOURSELF LATELY – MOM’S ALWAYS KNOW – SO I TOLD HER I HAD – PAST TENSE – BREAST CANCER AND THAT IT WAS ALL GONE AND I’M GONNA BE JUST FINE – SHE CRIED – AND SO DID I – BUT THAT’S JUST WHAT WE DO – MOM HAD COLON CANCER TWO YEARS AGO – SO THE SCARE IS ALWAYS THERE – BUT WE ARE TOUGH PEOPLE – “STRONG LIKE BULL” TO QUOTE MY GREEK GRANDFATHER…

    DR. CALLED THAT NITE TO TELL ME – HERE IT COMES – OUT OF THE SEVEN LYMPH NODES THAT WERE TAKEN OUT – ONLY ONE – HAD MICOSCOPIC CANCER CELLS – SON OF A BITCH – AND SHE WOULD HAVE TO GO BACK IN AND CLEAR THE MARGINS – NOW I’M NOT REALLY CLEAR ON MEDICAL TERMS – BUT THAT JUST DIDN’T SOUND LIKE A FUN TIME TO ME – SO I QUIPPED – WHY DON’T WE JUST PUT A ZIPPER ON THE SOB AND BE DONE WITH IT – NO REACTION – OK SO WE SET UP ANOTHER APPT. AT THE HOSPITAL – SO HERE WE GO AGAIN – FOLLOWING WEEK – THURSDAY – DECEMBER 8TH – WE HAVE ANOTHER PROCEDURE TO CLEAR THE MARGINS – AND I MAY SAY – THIS ONE HURT MORE THAN THE FIRST ONE – DON’T REALLY KNOW WHY – IT JUST HURTS MORE –

    DEC. 20TH – DR. HERNANDEZ CALLED WITH GOOD NEWS – SPECIMEN THAT THEY SENT OFF TO A LAB IN CALIFORNIA (DON’T WE HAVE LABS IN OHIO) ANYWAY – THERE IS A CLINICAL TRIAL THAT IS PART OF A STUDY TO DETERMINE THE GENETIC MAKE UP OF MY PARTICULAR CANCER – AND IF I PARTICIPATED – I WOULD BE GIVEN TREATMENT ESPECIALLY FOR THIS CANCER –

    THEY GIVE EACH CANCER A NUMBER AND MINE HAD TO BE BELOW 25 BUT 18 OR LESS WAS EVEN BETTER – OR I WOULD HAVE TO DO A FULL BLOWN TREATMENT – CHEMO – RADIATION – HORMONE THERAPY – SO PLEASE GOD JUST LET MY NUMBERS BE BELOW 25 OR 18– WELL THEY WERE – 14 – HELL YES! SO DR. RECOMMENED JUST HORMONE THERAPY AND RADIATION – THANK YOU JESUS –

    SO MY DEAR WARRIOR SISTERS – WAITING TO SEE THE ONCOLOGIST WHO WILL TELL ME THE REST OF THIS STORY – WILL KEEP YOU POSTED…

    LOVE TO ALL,
    LOIS


  2. Story was just that. Nothing against a person going through this treatment but it didn’t set the right tone for what I think is a short story told the proper way.Could have been better written with so real dialogue and not just all telling. It left nothing for us to imagine and all the WTF’s and WTH’s I doubt are sutable for your magazine.