Monday, October 25, 2010

She ...

Everywhere, USA - ... has nothing whatsoever in common with me, I thought as she sat down beside me. She has no idea that I am the keynote speaker here and we are on the opposite sides of the spectrum in every instance, I would guess. Her hair; perfectly coiffed, down to the last strand. Me, um, not so much. Need a cut, and badly. Her clothing; high end, and again, perfect down to the last pleat and ironed and starched cuff. Me, been traveling. A lot. Wrinkle-free black pantsuit, standard. Her makeup; flawless. Me, mascara, check. Chapstick. That’s all she wrote. Her shoes; Cole Haan black patent oxford pumps. This season’s, even. (Come on, a girl notices these things!) Me; I’d be 6’9” in those things. Keep dreaming. Her Mercedes is parked next to my little car that juuuuuust barely made the drive. HA!

So there we sit, right next to each other. Worlds apart. Then, as always, I start a conversation. Two minutes, that’s all it takes. She had cancer. Full mastectomy. Family history of ovarian cancer, to boot. With the exception of my pregnant-during-treatment nonsense, we are right on the same page as far as surgeries and the bad hand dealt to us by the dealers in the big genetic card game of life.

So yes, our lives are worlds apart. Shall be forever, is my guess. But under her starched expensive tailored suit and under my wash-n-wear travel gear, we have scars in the same spots. And our hearts, while a bit shredded by chemo, still have a strong desire to keep on pumping. Circumstances have placed us at the same table (or God winking, as my boss would say) and so we begin the conversation. That leads us to realize how very much we have in common, and that the other stuff is just stuff and doesn’t matter.

We leave with a hug. And me envying only one thing – those sweet kicks. :)

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