My parents were in town this week to attend a funeral for an old family friend who was killed in Iraq. He retired from the military and got a contracting job and decided to go for a year to make bank. He was only there for a month or so before getting exploded in a convoy. It's unbelievable that we are at war right now on two continents. I know it's not WW2 or anything, but probably close to 95% (give or take) of this country's population is virtually oblivious to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan - they wouldn't even know we are fighting if it weren't for occasional headlines in the papers about another surge or more violence.
Working with a bunch of FSO's (foreign service officers) on the passport task force these last few weeks has sparked my wanderlust. I've had a tiny thought in the back of my mind for years now that I want to go to Iraq. There are lots of reasons - to help, serve, make a difference, see what's really going on out there, be a part of it. Every time I think about going to any overseas post I get gripped by "cancer-fear".
I'm trying to think of how to describe that - I guess basically I just feel so vulnerable. I think this feeling will eventually go away. I still have another hypo-hell and first year scans looming in January, and the fear that there will still be masses or new mets on the scans, and the possibility of retreatment. And the months of feeling ill and drained. After I get a "clean" scan, I can go two and then five years between scans with only monitoring of bloodwork, but it's still a lifetime of it, repeated ad nauseum. I try to put it in a box. Like here's my life and in this small box is my cancer. It's more like a black hole in the space of my life than a box. A box is contained, you can shut it and put it on the top shelf of the closet and forget it's there. Black holes are spots in space that are so dense they suck in anything that gets close.
Still, I want to go to Iraq. Probably it would not happen for a year or more if I could. Maybe the violence will be less at that point? Unlikely, but it's possible.