Yesterday, while I was feeling a little bit sorry for myself, I went online for some retail therapy and I ended up buying myself a giant blue plush testicle from I Heart Guts. This happy dude right here:
It made me happy to know it was on its way to my house. Buying something like that, or in fact buying anything isn’t supposed to make you feel better. If you read any books about cancer a huge number of authors advocate letting go of the material and focusing on the spiritual. Good for them, but they don’t have a giant blue stuffed nut and I do, and with the ineffable air of authority that gives me, I say do whatever makes you happy. If that means mainlining stand up comedy shows or soap operas then go for it. If that means getting into (or back into) religion and that makes you happy, then do it. Screw everyone else, most of the advice they give will be advice that works for them, not necessarily for you. You should never have to feel embarrassed for bringing a smile to your own face no matter how you go about doing it. Retail therapy won’t be right for, or available to, everyone but just about everyone I’ve spoken to with serious health issues has that one thing they’re sort of embarrassed to talk about, but that they like to do to keep themselves on an even keel.
I’ve heard of everything from regular one am snacking to fancy dress to a person that taped a picture of someone they hated to the inside of their barf bucket so they had something to aim for when they were sick.
Personally I think that last one is a stroke of genius.
There is another side to this which is that taking back a little control and doing nice things for other people can make you feel pretty good too. That’s not what this is about. This is about taking care of your own mind while your body gets busy stomping on cancer’s face.
Cancer sucks. That’s not in dispute anywhere. It just sucks, and the treatment sucks too (except for the part where hopefully it keeps you alive, that part is pretty good). So if there’s something silly or stupid that you can do to make yourself laugh or smile or feel good about yourself while you’re low then I say go for it. I’ll be over here playing with my giant blue ball.
That…that sounded better in my head.