It’s all about me now. Life has never been all about me. It has always been about others with me playing a supporting role. But it is all about me now. Not necessarily because people love me all the more, but because they have little choice in the matter. And I feel guilty about it. All the time.

Guilt is everywhere. We feel guilty about just about everything. It is all consuming.  Paralyzing. It makes us do things and behave in ways that would not happen if we did not feel guilty. What I saying here is not new.

I watch as people wait on me hand and foot. I am often too tired to do anything about it. I go to bed at 8 while others stay up and clean the kitchen.

I am not allowed to vacuum because of the weight of the vacuum ceaner.

I can go shopping, but cannot carry anything over 10lbs. Too much strain on the stomach, more to the point to the rearranged pieces in the stomach.

I can tidy things up, but only to a point.

Mostly I lie around and watch others do things for me, around me.

And guilt is the most destructive feeling I have within me at these moments. I am putting people through a nightmare, and am powerless to take them out of it. The doctors and nurses all emphasize that this is all about me. I should not feel guilty. Go to bed when you are tired. Don’t feel guilty. It is all about me.

But I do feel guilty.

The situation is slowly changing. I am getting a lot stronger. I am driving the car and going out a lot more by myself. This is all in my good week of course. I emptied the dishwasher the other day, and am starting to do it more often. Seminal moments. I am also starting to fill it up. Life is getting better. I am a bit nervous around knives. I am told that the chemo makes you more prone to bleeding badly when you cut yourself. I am very careful around the sink.

But the guilt comes back in the chemo week when I am too tired to do anything. It is a very negative feeling. I have attempted to lead as guilt free a life as possible. Things happen. Deal with it. Apologize. Talk about it. Move on. Do not dwell on things. It may take me a while to formulate my thoughts and think through the process. Don’t let negative thoughts linger. Deal. Move on.

This journey has created all kinds of complications. Some obvious. But guilt was unexpected. Guilt over not being to do something you have done all the time. Specially when you appear healthy. But you are not. ¬†At least not all the time. Somehow, you fail to let the good weeks make up for the bad weeks. The two should balance one another. They don’t.

Guilt is a terrible thing.

5 Responses to “Guilt”

  1. yeah, guilt sucks. smells a little like a bad cigar, come to think of it. sticks and lingers and undermines what is good. most of us squirm when it’s all about us, even if some part wishes wishes wishes to be the centre of everyone’s universe. also, it’s so hard to listen deeply, know what we need, accept what is, and give in. oy. such a practice. thanks again for not skirting the darker undersides… you are making your way in such complicated territory. I can barely imagine. so much love to you. Sharon

  2. farokh, your lack of guilt in previous situations was an inspiration to me, i hope you are able to leave this behind and be as blithe and carefree about being the centre of attention as you were able to be about what society would view as more serious transgressions. love, gita

  3. Long ago, we had a customer who was paralyzed from mid-chest down. Someone brought him in in a wheelchair, and we would take the cash from his breast pocket and put the change back in.

    This guy had the most BEAUTIFUL vibes. And, after thinking about it, I decided it must be because he was resigned to his helplessness.

    Not that I think you should resign yourself, but at least don’t beat yourself up. Derive what pleasure you can from being taken care of.

    And thanks for giving me so many laughs!

  4. I am sure it is not easy, but you should not feel guilty. You have done so much for other in your life, and if anyone does anything for you is out of love. Just focus on yourself and your health!

  5. Oh Farokh, get in the groove. Being the center of the universe is the place to be. It’s your turn. Everyone around you is taking over these small daily things without resentment, and do so just as you would for them if roles were reversed: without hesitation and certainly without judgment. Feel the love and accept this is how it should be. xxoo

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