Yesterday was an incredibly emotional day. I cried tears of worry, fear, relief, joy. I vacillated between trying to be hopeful, and not wanting to be overly optimistic, only to get blindsided by bad news. Normally with these types of things, at least when it comes to myself, I have some sort of "premonition" feeling. I just know what the result will be. In the past few years, I've undergone several biopsies testing for cancer (melanoma and endometrial) as well as a brain scan for MS and TIAs. With each of these, I wasn't concerned. Not because I'm short-sighted, or think "that doesn't happen to me" (cancer has hit all to close to home in my family in the last few years and I don't think I'm immune by any means) but because I just knew (I was right, for the record, all were clean). With Cinn, I felt no premonition. I tried to prepare for the worst. I tried to be strong for her. But neither was fueled by the underlying feeling of certainty, just my trying to balance out my emotions - something we all know by now that I'm not a superstar at.
The feeling of relief, when it finally comes, is a strange one. I call it more a feeling than an emotion, because it's externally fueled. There's some circumstance that's causing you to feel upset/anxious/angry/fearful, and with a positive result comes relief. You don't just wake up one day feeling relieved out of nowhere (or at least I never have), the way you might feel sad or happy or even angry. Relief makes you laugh, cry, feel giddy, feel light-hearted and light-headed. Other things that would normally bother or frustrate you seem tiny in comparison - who cares that some jerk just cut you off in traffic and flipped you off, your dog is healthy!
Eventually, relief fades, as all emotions do. But I think there's a lesson that we can take from the brief moments with have with it. Relief is a great perspective-maker. It's easy to get caught up in the day to day annoyances that, if you were to look back five years, or a year, or maybe even a few months from now, you wouldn't even remember. Yet during that time of relief, we're able to look at these frustrating or negative moments for what they really are - minutia, when compared to something that's really worth being upset over. Nobody wants to face a situation in which they have to hope for relief, but ultimately, we all do. So if we can learn a bit from it, well, that's just a bonus.