While I am feeling much, much better about the state of my life, I am finding that certain things are starting to make me irrationally angry. Small things, things that have nothing whatsoever to do with me or my own life.
I’m not usually one to get in other people’s business or tell people how to live their lives. I hate people who hound me for occasionally eating a frozen meal or sometimes drinking soda. I hate people butting into my business.
But really? STOP USING TANNING BEDS, PEOPLE. I know, I know. I don’t get it. I’ve never used a tanning bed in my life, nor do I care if my skin has the perfect summer tan year-round. So no, I don’t really understand the appeal. But you know what I DO understand the appeal of? NOT GETTING SKIN CANCER. My grandpa died from skin cancer gone awry (it wasn’t melanoma and would’ve been curable, but he waited too long), and in addition to being high-risk for breast and ovarian cancer, I’m also high-risk for melanoma. It frustrates me when people are so cavalier about it. Tanning beds blatantly, flat-out CAUSE CANCER. Melanoma KILLS YOU. I don’t have a choice – I’m high-risk no matter WHAT I do. You have a choice. Use it.
Also, smoking. I’ve never been an anti-smoking crusader. I look at it like I look at most things – it’s not my body, it’s not my life, it’s not my choice. I choose not to smoke because the health risks and the expense just aren’t worth it to me, and because I’m lucky enough that trying a cigarette or two in my youth didn’t result in a lifelong addiction. I’m not a girl who says “Ew, I’d never date a smoker!” because it doesn’t, in theory, bother me that much. And somehow it ended up that someone I love dearly is, in fact, a smoker. Finding yourself high-risk for cancer changes things, though. When I read that I’m high-risk for pancreatic cancer – from which few people ever recover – and that SMOKING is the cause of half the pancreatic cancer cases… I changed my tune a little bit. I think I might be turning into a bit of an anti-smoking crusader. Am I going to start yanking cigarettes out of people’s hands? No, but I’m certainly going to make sure people are educated. And a certain person has been made aware that, hey, the smoking? It needs to go. I know quitting is hard. I can’t pretend to know what it’s like or how crappy it is, but both of my parents used to smoke, and my dad quit a two-pack-a-day habit cold-turkey, so I know it CAN BE DONE.
And – this is just a guess – I BET quitting smoking is better than dying of cancer. Maybe.
(Like I said, I’m irrationally angry. I wouldn’t actually be this insensitive toward someone who was in the process of quitting. Just on the internet. Or something.)
Also? I know people mean well when they say things like, “You can just get great, perfect, new boobs!” but the thing is? I don’t want “new boobs.” I want my own. I may be in the minority here, but I’ve generally been pretty happy with my body and my physical appearance. When I’m displeased with my body, it’s generally regarding my weight or my stomach – never my curves or my chest. I know people are trying to be all “look on the bright side!” and point out the silver lining, and I get that. But it’s like when the love of your life dumps you. “You’ll find someone else!” doesn’t help – you don’t want someone else. You still love that person and want to be with them and are too busy being sad and missing them to want to even THINK about someone else. It’s kind of like that. You don’t want something new. You just want to be your normal self in your normal body. And only I would compare the BRCA gene mutation to a relationship, because I compare everything to relationships.
But hey, if I’m going to be irrationally angry, if I can be a person who takes my irrational anger and keeps a few people from dying of melanoma/lung cancer/pancreatic cancer, I guess it’s kind of worth it, right?