Last month I went knowing that something was dreadfully wrong and expecting that she was going to tell me she had cancer. I just knew. But I did not expect that I would know as soon as I saw her, from across this huge waiting room. I don't know why it never occurred to me that she was going to look different. I guess I had come to realize that breast cancer was a very likely explanation for what had been going on, but I didn't expect it to be true. I think also I sort of think of her as super-human or something. And stable. She's looked the same since I've known her, aside from a little more grey in her hair. And now she looks puffy and shiny (presumably from steroids) and has a wig.
I don't want to see her looking different. I know all the reasons this is wrong and also all the reasons it is understandable. But it really bothers me, and now I have only one week to adjust to it. I can't explain the anxiety, but I really wish it would pass. I know it won't be too long and she'll look like herself again. She is either finished with chemo or very close to it, so her hair will start to return soon. She starts radiation soon and so she's not done with treatment, but will be in a couple months. I'm sure she'll look more like herself before long and then appointments will be easier, but I'm finding that it's easier for me to be superficial than to deal with this overall.
I just have no idea how to handle it.