Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Finally -- a photo!

While I'm still coming to terms with what's about to happen and all the ramifications, life goes, it's about time for a picture, don't you think?

Granted, this is not the most auspicious shot to restart with, it's a bit in the shadows and I look strangely green, lol. But Michael and I are out of practice since the last one and the light has changed now that summer is approaching.

After my diagnosis at first it was simply hard to have even a remotely pleasant expression on my face, so posting pix seemed, well, odd. Then after a while I was deeply absorbed in research and only dressed to go to the doctors -- which didn't induce a feeling of wanting to take a snap shot either.

But always in the back of my mind I knew that returning to at least a picture here and there was somehow important. I can't quite define why...perhaps it could give me a feeling of normalcy? Maybe it would add a visual record to the written one of my journey...and in years to come my kids would see how their mom went thru this awful thing but came out on the other side. That could be a life lesson for them to hold on to, surely.

And further, in my own more broad-reaching motherly/sisterly way, I'm hoping that any other woman who has to experience this could take some comfort in seeing that no matter what I end up looking like for a while, there will be eventually a return to the simple act of choosing clothes and trying to project my own best image as an empowering & creative expression of personal style.

So I've decided not just to document this journey with my words, but to try and illustrate it now too by including pre and post op pix, even photos of me going thru chemo (if necessary), the whole kit and caboodle. Mind you, I won't post a pic every day...but my goal is to put up a few with some semblance of regularity.

Most importantly, for those that need or want it, when it's all over & done with, I will even provide before, during & after photos of my breasts. I know that looking at reconstruction photos has been very important in my own process so if I can add to that for another woman I am glad to do it. Oh, and for my regular readers, now my dear beloved friends, if ya just wanna see what they look like I'll be happy to show you too ;) I know I'd be curious. (there'll be a password or email type deal so I'm not plastering my boobs up indiscriminately, fyi!)

Obviously this blog has morphed a little, changed a bit -- and certainly so have/will I. But the core principle remains fundamentally the same. This is my journey...thanks to all who join me for a any stretch of the road. It's a comfort to have such great company.

See ya...


Trace said...

Completely gorgeous as always. I think it's so so awesome that you're going to chronicle this here. Gosh K you are so strong, I am in awe and inspired by every post. Love reading you, will be here for you during all this and beyond!

Weronika Janczuk said...

Kayleigh, I love seeing your photos--keep them coming, and keep your chin up.

Change doesn't always have to be bad, does it? ;)

I'll be back!

Brenda said...

Its great to see a picture of you! I look forward to your photo chronicles of your journey.

La Belette Rouge said...

It is so lovely to see you. Kayleigh, that is such a beautiful picture. I know for sure I have never been so happy to *see* you.

I am ever impressed by your spirit and attitude. The documenting of your journey is such a gift to us, to those who are going through cancer,and to your family. When you are well and this is over and your journey is on another road. Roads like your book, your poetry, and into other happy journeys yet to be determined, I imagine that when you look at your documenting of this journey will amaze yourself. You will be amazed, as we are now, by your strength, beauty and grace. I know I am.

Kari said...

It's so uplifting to see a picture of you again! You are beautiful - and not only externally - and so courageous. I hope you can remember that when you're distressed at how your body is being impacted by cancer.

Jane said...

I was so relieved to see your photo and I just want to let you know that I will be here "by your side" on the journey form thousands of miles away.

Mervat said...

I will be there every single step of the way looking forward to every installment.

And my God woman, you have simply amazing legs!!

All my love,

~Tessa~Scoffs said...

I see a change in you since your last picture. You're thinner, more wistful and delicate. And yet there is a steely reserve. I am gazing on an amazing woman.

Sheila said...

I'm so happy to "see" you again! You look gorgeous by the way (I love your hair curly).

I think it's a valuable thing for you to record not just your thoughts but your pictures as you go through this life-changing event. And not only for your kids and husband, but for you to look at in the future and say, "Yeah, I kicked that cancer. If I can do that, I can do anything."

Stay strong, Kayleigh!


Jean said...

You look incredible! I agree with Tessa, you look different - but in a good way. Thinking of you x

WendyB said...

You look lovely. I think it's a great idea to document your experience and I have no doubt it will help a lot of other women.

sallymandy said...

Kayleigh, you are doing all this with such grace. My quietness at your blog the past few weeks doesn't express how much I've thought of you. I love what you wrote here--and once again am reminded how clear and readable and soothing your writing is.

" matter what I end up looking like for a while, there will be eventually a return to the simple act of choosing clothes and trying to project my own best image as an empowering & creative expression of personal style."

This is the most hopeful and sane thing I've read anywhere in a long time.

Much love to you.

Chuck Dilmore said...

there she is!
and more beautiful than ever, Kayleigh!

we are honored
to be allowed to follow you
on your journey.

and if we get the chance
to carry you - even just a few steps -
then we are even more blessed.

from the pain and sadness
beauty will rise again.
peace & love~

Anonymous said...

I love your curls...You're gorgeous, and will continue to be!

Cassie said...

You look absolutely beautiful!

Unknown said...

Hooray for you! I love this photo! You look beautiful (goes without saying) and the backdrop of the greens and trees looks almost mystical and otherworldly. I am elated that you posted a style pic! My friend who was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer (the doctors never detected it, believe it or not), and who's survived and thrived (I've got a photo of her in our school graduation pix on my blog) finds clothes to be kind of a tool to keep her spirits up and make every day feel special. I think she is really onto something there, something I didn't realize till now.