Reclaiming your sexual self after cancer is as bad as it sounds.
Actually, it’s worse.
It’s like falling off a shining new Gary Fisher and then being given a unicycle with a flat tire and a rusty chain. It takes effort where effort wasn’t previously required and it forces the issue of how to exist in a foreign body in front of someone else.
Post cancer, it feels as though my life pre-cancer rained down men who launched themselves into my orbit, my lap, my bed. It’s not that I was overly attractive, but I did have hair. And tits. Maybe men are attracted to assholes (by which I’m referring to mean people, not dark anal canals) or women they can’t pin down.
I have no idea exactly what transpired — certainly a little depression and self-esteem issues — but whatever sex magic I was wielding prior to cancer, chemo, radiation and a zillion surgeries, promptly ended.
When I first thought I was ready for sex following treatment—which lasted nearly two years—I seriously considered how to go about it. I weighed how everything after cancer was different, but not drastically; things are also kind of the same. Some things had become sharper, some blurrier, but overall, everything is harder to define.
To read the entire article, which was published in PULP, click here.
(Note to reader: I published a version of this post before I should have. I hadn’t fully processed the event and wasn’t able to dig deep enough to fully embrace the story. That post can be read here.)