When To Stop Fixing Ourselves

You know how irritating it is when others try to help with their quick-fix solutions to our complex medical problems? What a shock when I realized I incessantly try to fix myself. Of course I want to feel well and improve quality of life, but when is it time to stop fixing? When I finished treatment, […]

Hair and Other Waking Things

Insane, I know, but after a long slumber, my hair woke up. Five years after my last chemo, new hair is growing back, again. Of course, it grew back earlier on. I posted a photo journal here. Apparently I’m not done. Around Thanksgiving five years ago, I had the last drip of Taxol that would signal the […]

New Year Healing

I’m not a particularly religious person, but I do enjoy services on Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. This year, as the rabbi went through the service and the congregants followed in prayer books, we heard the same familiar words recited every new year, but when we came to the prayer known as the Shehecheyanu, I had a moment […]

A Life on Hold

Before cancer, I had plans and aspirations, goals and dreams. Dreams don’t usually happen without a “one step in front of the other” effort. Those of you who are writers will be familiar with Anne Lamott’s book, Bird by Bird, which I use as a blueprint not only for writing but for life. The crux […]

I am Not Cancer

I am not sick. I am Eileen. Eileen is my given name from birth. That label helps people to identify me and all that I am. Incidentally, I had breast cancer, but breast cancer is not me and I am not it. We had a relationship. It didn’t work out. We parted ways. I will […]


Cancer thuds like rocks hurled deep Ripples flow    I’M WOUNDED…      I’m wounded…         i’m wounded… The tale told A single-note gong Like shockwaves    I’M WOUNDED…      I’m wounded…         i’m wounded… Cried until the shrill sparrow’s call awakens a rising dulcet major chord That warbles    i’m […]

Cancer: A Gift?

Doctors may fix us, but it is we who heal ourselves. That may involve the aid of others, but we are the ones who do the deep work of inner exploration that allows us to do what is needed to heal. I’ve been adamant that cancer is not a gift, that it’s been a curse […]

2013: An End of the Year Review

2013 was hardly the best of times, but not the worst either. Here’s a recap of the highlights and low points that punctuate my 2013. One year ago, a blog was born. I named it Woman in the Hat, although the only time I’ve worn hats was when I was stripped bald by chemo. I […]

Update and Repost: Lovers’ Quarrel with WordPress

Recently, I started a new job. It’s the first fulltime job I’ve had since cancer. I’m in a period of adjustment and as a result to the blog, I’m not posting as soon as I would have liked. I don’t know why at this point, two years post-treatment, that I’m still so fatigued. I had […]


I started this blog two months ago as I embarked on a journey to improve my health and stamina after cancer treatment. The blog evolved into what I love doing best, which is to write articles that provoke thought and/or laughter. I write about myself only as much as I feel my experiences and emotions […]

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