In July of 2017, at the age of 40, I was diagnosed. Stage 2 breast cancer or Invasive Ductal Carcinoma (IDC) is the medical term for it.
Being diagnosed with breast cancer is a life altering experience. You go from happily going about your life to being faced with your own mortality. You embark on a daunting roller-coaster ride and you don’t know when it will end.
This image was taken during a 2014 an Axialent/Equus retreat at Bishop’s Lodge, in Santa Fe, NM. The horses in this photograph depict a herd of four horses. The white horse is Artemis, named after the Greek goddess of the hunt, forests and hills, the moon and archery.
At a Club Med all-inclusive resort somewhere exotic. It’s 7:30 am, the alarms goes off. I have exactly 25 minutes to get ready for my shift as a front desk clerk at the resort I work and live in. I quickly put on my clothes having taken a shower the night before, brush my hair and put it in a ponytail and then start the transformation process. By putting on my make-up and uniform I slowly morph into the friendly receptionist who never has a bad day, not a request is too much to ask, goes above and beyond to provide excellent service to the customers. My workday starts as soon as I walk out of my room, greeting guests, wishing them a wonderful day. Helping a couple with directions to the tennis courts. When I arrive at the front desk at 8am, there is already a line forming to sign up for the Brazilian Steakhouse on the property. Guest are arguing with each other about who arrived first as I start to take their names. The restaurant only has a limited amount of space and it fills up quickly, leaving some of the guests disappointed. They are quite vocal about their disappointment. It’s 8:15 am and so far I have been insulted and disrespected at least twice. I am taking it all in with a smile. This is the “I never have a bad day” me, “no doesn’t exist in my vocabulary” me. This is the version of me that has a big wall protecting the real me.