Kristal

This site is about my experience with cervical dysplasia, as well as anything else I might feel like discussing!


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Connecting through social media

This is going to sound a bit silly, but I realized tonight that I don’t like it when I “lose” a friend through some sort of social media.  It’s not a vanity thing, but more that I hate losing a connection that could hold potential for the future.  Someone I thought I had little in common with, can all of a sudden become closer, due to a shared experienced.  Now, had they dropped me during the quiet time, that connection never would have happened (or if I wasn’t as vocal as I am about everything, we wouldn’t have realized the connection!).  I moved around a lot as a kid, until we finally settled in Calgary permanently.  I thought about my former friends a lot, but it’s hard to write letters to 40+ people a year, and still have time for the all important childhood experiences.  Once I discovered Facebook, all of a sudden I could track down these people, find out how they were doing, and occasionally share something with them.  After 20 years of separation, do we have any common interests, or goals? Quite often we don’t, but I still like knowing how these former playmates are doing. Do we have to talk a certain number of times a month to be friends? No, not at all, why set a limit on friendship?  Staying connected with those I’ve met through work has found me jobs, and so when someone I know through previous work decides, “I don’t really know this person, so I will just un-friend”, I think, “Well, that was rash, who knows how we could help each other in the future?”.  It just feels sad to lose connections, and realistically looking at myself, maybe I am a bit nosy, and too concerned with understanding other humans (I am trained in archaeology, with a background in psychology)….is there really anything wrong with being like that?  In a world that is becoming increasingly distant and cold, shouldn’t we strive to use that technology that increases the distance between us, to instead bring us closer together?  Connections, even ones with assumed little importance, can one day become very huge in your world, especially if you have any medical issues.  We don’t even realize how lucky we are to have social media, previous generations never had the ability to stay connected with so many people, so easily. So next time you think, “I should un-friend that person, we hardly know each other”, maybe hold off on that, or at worst limit their availability to your profile, because you just don’t know what they might mean to your future.  


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Merry Christmas!

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Merry Christmas everyone! Thank you for being the occasional reader, supporter, or even follower (it still amazes me that people want to know when I post). I appreciate any and all support, especially since I am very rusty at writing.  I hope you enjoy your holidays in whatever way makes you happy.  Cheers!

*The picture was taken near my home, a family was being given a big surprise on Christmas Eve.


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From calm to panic in three seconds

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I’m posting a picture I took at the Trevi fountain, as it reminds me how panicked I felt that day, not unlike today with a phone call from my Dr.  The nurse called today to ask if I knew about my appointment with the clinic.  After speaking to her for a few minutes,I began to panic a little, and asked the nurse if I had missed one, or was it in the next week?  It turned out it was for the appointment that the clinic made with me for May 2014.  When I hung up the phone, I looked at my co-worker and laughed, full of relief.  It may have been a better idea for the nurse to say “Are you aware of the May 2014 appointment?, instead of making me think the clinic had missed calling me, or something worse had been found, again missed communication. I generally can keep my panic under control, but you don’t know when you will be overwhelmed by it.  Things are getting a lot better though, less panic attacks, now if I could work on sleeping through the night!

To give a bit of context to the picture, when I visited Rome I was overwhelmed with panic  It was wall to wall people in the city, and at Trevi Fountain, which is a very small area, there was a mass of people.  I can’t even believe how many, and my picture does not include all of those who were there.  Surrounded by people and no where to comfortably wait for the group, so when someone said to throw a coin in the fountain to me, I piped up with “I don’t want to come back!”.  I guess if I wasn’t a little neurotic I wouldn’t be me, and at least I try something once, before deciding I am too afraid to try!


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Why I should be embarrassed….

This word has been coming up a lot in my life, embarrassment.  I hear it from people who have gone through (or are going through) a similar situation, that we shouldn’t be embarrassed to talk about below the belt cancers.  Of course I agree, and I’ve noticed it in my own life.  People who refuse to speak to me anymore, sinceI talk openly about my cervical dysplasia. It’s really sad that we feel there are things people should hide, that they shouldn’t talk about ever.  I don’t know if it’s like one nurse’s opinion, that people are afraid, or if it really just is plain ignorance. Really, I shouldn’t be surprised though, since every day people are told to change who they are.  It would be nice to see things change, for people to be more open, and there are places where that change is happening.

That would be what I learned on Friday, that there are people who are working on changing how we talk about our bodies.  It was my first rehearsal for the Vagina Monologues.  It was amazing to be in a room of women who were open to discussing anything.  They said words like vagina with ease, and made jokes that were hilarious and daring.  And a few were there like me, to be part of something that forces our society to accept that female sexuality exists, and to speak about their own sexual health issues!  One girl was even there because she wanted to learn to become comfortable with talking about sex, cervixes, as she was very uncomfortable with feeling uncomfortable.  How brave is that?!?!  I’m still not sure about this whole being on stage thing, but just being in that room for 2 hours for rehearsals made me feel less alone.  And no one laughed at me when I answered the question “What would my vagina wear?”, everyone else spoke about wearing diamonds, and fabulous things, whereas I said mine would wear something inconspicuous because it wants to hide.  And the level of acting talent in that room, and how brave one girl was with a monologue that was mainly moans…..

I think women like us are meant to change the world, the maybe small ways, but even small changes can be powerful.  I think the director was right that being a part of something so challenging and scary will be healing for me.


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The end of my social media course…and the past few weeks

Today I handed in my final assignment, and it feels like a weight off my shoulders.  I hope I will do okay, but I really struggled to finish it this week, as I just feel really tired and uninterested in things.  It’s the same reason I haven’t been keeping up with my posting on the blog, even though there have been a few exciting announcements and things I could write in an article. It’s not like I’m depressed, but I think I am dealing with a bit of dysthymia.  I still enjoy seeing my friends and getting out, I just feel a bit drained, and after what I went through in November I’m sure no one would be surprised at how I feel.  All I really want to do is stay at home and watch shows on tv or netflix, it’s nice not having to speak to anyone for hours.  This behavior normally wouldn’t trouble me, but I really need to get back to my regular routine at some point, which included gym visits, and getting out for walks.  It’s weird though, although I have the all clear on my biopsy containing any cancer, I still feel like I’m waiting for the next round of this battle.  I know that I can’t do that, but as my doctor says “We can’t spend all our time worrying, but at the same time We can’t h just ignore the situation either”.  I know I just need some time, and that I will move on, and maybe one day I will learn my abnormal results are back, but at the same time…maybe that won’t happen. 

So tonight, I am going to enjoy some amazing homemade Egyptian food, in the next week I will attend parties, and otherwise my plans include having fun with my close friends.  I’ve never enjoyed the holidays, but I’m determined to enjoy this one. 

Side note: I hope to remain in contact with many of my ADL 310 classmates.  I really enjoyed getting to know you, and reading your posts.  I hope we all continue to blog!  I didn’t realize how wonderful social media could really be, or how it would connect me to so many new and interesting people.