The Creation of ‘Multiple Me’

As more time passes I fear I’ve become a very complex person with many different sides and I don’t really know how to make any sense of who I am anymore.  Writing about it seems like a good place to start and will give me something to look back on in the future.   I seem to flit around like a butterfly, once I’ve settled on some sort of equilibrium along comes a gust of wind causing me to fly off on a tangent!  I can remain unsettled for days and sometimes I am so lost with conflicting thoughts and feelings its hard to do normal day to day things.

It’s dawned on me that I’ve created several different personalities to fit my new life, the main one being my ‘I’m back to normal’ one.  I haven’t done this knowingly but it’s become second nature to me.  I like to refer to it as ‘Multiple Me’, a way of defining my new mixed up personality.

Struggling to see who I am

While hospitalised I developed the ‘I’m strong and can cope with all of this personality’ which came into play from the moment I was told I had Leukaemia, I never really cried or let myself feel the fear I should have felt.  But thinking about it this side of me was part of me before cancer, I was always good in a crisis. There was also a very detached personality and when I look back at the many frightening and painful things that happened while I was having treatment it was obviously a way of dealing with it all.  These ‘strong’ and ‘detached’ personalities lead those around me to call me brave, it wasn’t brave, it was just a coping mechanism.  Sometimes I couldn’t stand the way people looked at me so this detached side kicked in stopping me from caring.  Maybe it was a natural reaction, the power of the mind to enable me to get through the awful treatment.  Now these two have taken a bit of a back seat until it comes to my 8 weekly remission check.

Because my diagnosis was literally overnight with chemotherapy starting within 24 hours and I was extremely close to losing my life so for me there is a lot to process (you can read more about here; Setting the Scene…the road to where I am now). I read and hear a lot about the ‘New Normal’ and this is something I can really relate to and I am still trying to pin mine down.   At this point I have no idea who I am, who I am meant to be or how I am meant to act.  

I have this very positive upbeat side where I laugh and joke about many things including my illness, I’ve always had a naughty side and that hasn’t changed.  There is nothing better then laughing out loud and seeing the funny side of things at the most inappropriate times.  I love a comedy that illustrates the funny side of normal life as well as the stupidity and slapstick of TV shows dreamt up by the likes of Keith Lemon.  In fact it was one of Keith Lemon’s shows that had me in tears of laughter for the first time since my diagnosis when watching TV at home between chemo cycles! My husband was so happy to see me laugh again, it had literally been weeks since I’d so much as smiled.  
When I am talking about my experience in my role as a Bloodwise Ambassador to a room full of people I have my public speaker face.  I am very driven to raise awareness and happy to talk openly about what happened, I really admire other people who have done the same and find it really rewarding.  When I am speaking at an event I detach myself and tell my story as if it’s someone else’s, something I never knew I was capable of.

I find myself switching between these personalities several times a day so it’s no wonder I am emotionally exhausted most of the time.  I have become very good at hiding behind my smile, at keep my tears at bay, at acting…I deserve an OSCAR so please don’t hesitate with the nominations!

It can be very hard at times knowing which one is the real me…I’m not sure anymore, maybe I am all of them and maybe that is ok.  I guess only time will tell.  Am I the vulnerable, anxious shell of a person or the warrior who won’t be brought down by anything?  Am I the person grateful to be alive, totally in love with life and living it a breakneck speed or am I the angry, shell of a person, confused, struggling with fatigue and fighting to get back in control?  I HAVE NO IDEA…

When I look back at this blog it will be interesting to see how or if anything changes.

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