Sunday, June 24, 2012

No Superhero

My hair is still falling out. Despite the mohawk. Despite the purple. Despite the badass (the word I've heard repeated most often in the wake of my 'do) photos that make me look and feel tougher than I really am.

I am not a superhero. I think one small part of me, the magical-thinking part, looked at those pictures and read all your comments and thought, "You know? They are right. Look at me! I could stop a speeding train if I wanted to."

And then more hair came out in my hands this morning. Purple hair. Little sprigs of hair from the sides. Still falling out. Of course it is. Even badass purple hair is no match for the poison being pumped into my body to try to kill another poison already in there.

I have no superpowers. My hair is still falling out. I still have cancer.

And worst of all, this: Hudson is still gone.


  1. Oh my dear. Oh love. You make me wish that I had superpowers of my own so very, very much. So I could fix this. Both sets of poisons, hair and bring your sweet daughter back.

    But, sadly, none of us have superpowers.

    All I have is hope for you, lots and lots of hope. That whether you feel badass or not, superhero-ic or not, that you will see the back of this cancer. I have to hope that for you. For Ed. For Jackson, who could not be any cuter if he tried.

    And I think of your Hudson so often and I wish that she were here. Your dear, dear sweet girl. I wish that the world paid attention to my wishes.

    This comment is so woefully inadequate but I'm hitting publish anyway. Just hoping, hoping, hoping. With all my might.

  2. you may not have superpowers, but you do have powers. and those are the ones you need to keep believing in.

  3. This sucks. It is really, really shitty. There is no fairness in it, and I'm so sorry you are dealing with it.

    I will never stop shaking my head about the injustice of Hudson being gone. It's always going to be really f***ing unfair, no matter how much time passes (and apologies for the profanity, but some things are worth the F word, and I think the unfairness of her death qualifies.) I'm very sorry.

    As the previous commenter said, my comment feels incredible inadequate but want you to know I'm here and thinking of you.

  4. Mandy, I've been thinking and discussing a lot about the quote that inspired Team Stronger's name, "What doesn't kill us makes us stronger." The Kelly Clarkson song you posted is catchy and danceable, and I will probably download it to listen to in the car when I am going back and forth to BARBRI. Not because I'm facing or have faced anything like what you are/have, but because that is my challenge du jour.

    With the mohawk, you *look* like a superhero, and with your behavior, throughout these awful events, you have, to an outsider, acted like one. Although a person can't know, I know in my heart of hearts that I would not handle things as beautifully as you have.

    Except for this: one of my friends from church said that strength=love. So I sort of adapted the quote for myself to say, "What doesn't kill us makes us more loving." In that form, I can understand the maxim much better. I know that from the one experience in my life that comes anywhere close to matching yours, losing my dad, I have indeed become more loving, towards myself and towards others. I have a deeper capacity for love than I ever knew was possible before. And while I can't imagine myself getting "stronger" if other tragedies befall me, I can imagine myself becoming still more loving.

    So yeah. You aren't a superhero; you don't have superpowers. You wish you were/did; we wish the same. You still have cancer, and you don't have Hudson, and it's just, wow, shitty doesn't come close to describing. You are, however, one of the most incredibly loving people I know. A love warrior. And that is enough.

  5. What doesn't kill us makes us more loving. I love that, Melynn, and can attest to its truth. Hang in there, Mandy. You don't have superpowers but you have a lot of folks who love you.

  6. I don't think of you being full of poison. Your body has some errant cells that need to be shut down, Your nurses and physicians are administering the drugs that will stop those cells. I wish you continued strength on your path.

  7. Thinking of you tonight, Mandy. I wish it weren't this way.

  8. What the Family Snodgrass said. Exactly.

  9. I wish you so much love and strength tonight dear Mandy. I wish Hudson was still here with you all and I wish you didn't have cancer either. Blessings to you and your beautiful family. Lots of love xx

  10. Melynn's got it right. I have always said that you are so gracious, but I think that love warrior is perfect.


  11. Yes, Melynn has said what I was groping towards. Love warrior.

    More than enough.

  12. ...But you DO have super powers, Mandy! You have the power to weave this whole web of strangers (and real life family & friends) into one GIGANTIC chain of support. You have the power to spread the message of Hudson's incredible life around the world. And you have the power to LOVE and to HOPE.

    Don't give up that last one.

  13. You may not be able to stop a speeding train but you can power through this tragedy Mandy. When Hudson died I imagine you could not fathom living through another day- but yet here you are. Yes, this is another dark place.. but I have to believe there will be light at the end of yet another tunnel. And maybe a few other surprises as well. Sending love and light....

  14. I heard about Reynolds Price from WUNC radio this morning on the way to cycling with TNT. Ordered this book of his after reading this quote:

    "My old life is gone, was over the day they found the lump. I had forged a new one, but wish that someone along the way had told me that the cancer journey means becoming someone different -- and I think better."

    Thanks Reynolds Price