What Happens When You Have Ocular Melanoma

My experience with rare disease — part two

Rachel D Adams

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Photo of computerized tomography (CT) scanner by MART PRODUCTION

This is actually the second post in a series of posts I plan on writing about my unexpected illness. And I use the term illness lightly.

Upon writing that sentence, I had to reflect. I don’t feel abnormally ill, as I define being ill. I think that’s the biggest issue I have and have had all my life. I was an only child raised by a man of the silent generation and a woman that was just barely a baby boomer. I’ve pointed out the importance of that before. And it’s really biting me in the butt right now.

I was taught to be tough. I was also probably predisposed to it. I was what was called a tomboy and my daddy’s little girl — not just that innocent bullshit. I mean, he taught me how to handle pretty much everything except guns. He was a police officer, and he didn’t want me handling guns. I’d ask him why, but he’s gone now, so I can’t. But let’s just say, he and my mother both did well by me to make me very independent. Though I am no longer in touch with my mother, I give her props on a lot of my raising, and this is one of those things.

However, like many who deal with some childhood trauma of a certain level, I became very stubborn with it. I took it to the extreme. My pain tolerance is high, to begin with. Throw in the fact that I’m so independent that I don’t want to let anyone help me, then add a dash of always showing how tough I can be, and well…you get the picture.

I believe it’s also a very societal and cultural thing situation. This is just from my perspective, and I’d love to see comments from more learned people on this. But here’s my take: Women are taught to be the nurturers and the quiet contributors to everything. And so, we put ourselves last over everyone else in the family. At least, where I came from and who I come from taught me that this was something to be proud of.

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Rachel D Adams

(she/her/pan) I’m not a well-behaved woman. I am an ally, amateur photog, content creator, novelist, empty nester, traveler, wife, & friend.