He says, “You’re a real, complicated, grown-up woman and you don’t know how rare that is to find.”At the end of the nine-and-a-half-hour first date, I wrap my arms around his neck and say, “Good night, honey.” He likes that I call him “honey.” He had watched me walk into the restaurant from his boat that afternoon, and was hoping I was his date. I’m afraid of what comes next.*A few days later, I stand with the backs of my thighs pressed against the edge of the dining table in my beach house and kiss him. I nuzzle the top of my head under his chin, against the soft part of his neck. They don’t move.”He says, “You’re gorgeous.” He moves closer to kiss me and holds one of my reconstructed breasts in each of his hands.When I close my eyes and concentrate on his kisses, it feels right. I open my mouth against his open mouth and just breathe. I pause and tell him, “I want to take my shirt off and show you my breasts.” In an act of solidarity, he says, “Me, too” and pulls his Henley off over his head. He looks me in the eyes and says, “These are still a part of you.”Later that day, he emails: “I can only imagine the courage it takes for you to open your heart and your body to a new person…I feel a little scared that things are moving so fast. When I see him the next Wednesday, I sit on the wrap-around bench inside his boat and reach for him. He takes the whole of my left pinky finger into his mouth. *He’s been gone, away at work, in a different state.He says, “Take all the time you want.”During that week we don’t see each other, I take a planned trip to Victoria. “We’ll just have to find other parts of your body that are still sensitive. He traces the arc of my right hip bone as I lie on my side and says, “I could draw this.”I feel at home here with him.“You’re like an injured bird, but a survivor, too,” he says. When I see him for the first time in two weeks, it’s late evening.This woman will lean on the support of friends and family, along with the love from her children to get through this extremely difficult time. She should have faith that she is going to fully recover and live a wonderful life.She WILL recover and she will move on to better, happier, healthier times. She will be her normal self again (even better and stronger.) But it will take some time. If he stays, he is worth gold and it will mean the world to her.Although cancer in young women is rare, some factors seem to raise the risk of a diagnosis.Some risk factors include: Early detection is important for any cancer, but because the disease isn’t expected at a young age, it may be overlooked. Self-breast awareness is the best way to find any changes in your body.
He steals sideways looks at me in the dark, his face glowing with the light of the flames, and slowly shakes his head. He lives on a boat docked just around the bend on the lake.Yesterday, Salon published a great essay by Meghan Holohan on the trials and tribulations of dating with narcolepsy, a condition that causes her to pass out whenever she experiences an intense emotion, like, say, an attraction for the opposite sex.Something she discovered in sixth grade, when she passed out on top of the cutest boy in class. I feel bad about a lot of things, including the fact that I sometimes feel bad about my body. Everything begins to drop, except your blood pressure and cholesterol, and you suddenly understand why Nora Ephron felt bad about her neck.