Inner Critics

I have a very loud and active inner critic. It second guesses and judges me throughout my day, (it can also give me its fair share of praise- which it then later judges me for accepting.) Cancer provides very fertile ground for my inner negamatrix.  I second guess every decision, my feelings about those decisions, my general daily outlook-being hopeful is too nonchalant, being scared is too negative, etc. etc. etc.

In a social situation my inner critic is very concerned about how much is too much cancer talk. Last night out with friends, I was monitoring myself closely. When politely asked about my husband, I gave an update  and it seemed to me to be a real conversation killer. Maybe this is just the warped interpretation of my hyper-critical inner voice, but I worried about it. As the evening progressed and talk turned to relationships, I piped in that if you can have the guarantee of a good outcome, a spot of cancer can do wonders for a relationship. It felt like a “too soon” moment. But hey if it isn’t too soon for me to make light then it shouldn’t be too soon for others. I wish people could laugh more about cancer. I wonder if there is a cancer comedienne out there. It really is a source of lots of good material, believe me I have been trying it all out. (Disclaimer- My girlfriends really were great and were able to joke about it too after the initial awkwardness wore off. And the truth is, it is painful to see too much concern or worry in others it awakens mine.)

I have a new cancer lens on my view of life. It isn’t always there, but I want to be able to say what I want to say without judging myself for it. So take that inner critic.

The internet is an extremely useful tool for quieting inner critics. All it takes is one good google search and one can find supportive information to quiet any fears. This link to an article about how green tea extract and Chinese mushrooms have been shown to slow sarcoma growth is an example. My man is taking these supplements and this article made us feel great! The trick is then to stop searching before you find the article that will make you second guess yourself all over again.

As for Sex in the City, I think I discovered last night- that I love this series because it is all about women and their inner critics. My inner critic says, “Duh everyone knows that” but it was a revelation for me. The first was definitely the better film, but there were some good moments in the 2nd as well. I just can’t say anything too negative about those ladies, it feels like a betrayal.

My man told me that he feels tainted by his sarcoma, a little bit dirty.  It turns out he has an inner critic as well.  I will probably spend some time later googling this very phenomenon in cancer patients and see what I can find to quiet my husband’s negativeman.

How did people appease their inner demons before the internet?


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