Friday, May 10, 2002

Dear you all

Thank you . . .

I'm sorry for surprising you and making you worry. I'm going to rest a bit until I can work properly, as announced by my father and Toshiba-EMI. Now I'm at home resting quietly, so don't worry!

It might be better for you not to know how much emotion and power each of your words gives me when you send a message to me at this site, but you know, it's quite enormous. It took a long time to reply to you after all, as I've got way too much to tell in one message - here I, who is taking a rest, write frankly what I'm feeling right now.

Exactly a month ago I had an operation and the tumor was totally removed. About a week after I got well and the scar stopped hurting me when laughing out loud, I resumed recording the album and finished it with a little delay; then from the next day started promotion works for magazines/radio/TV. At first I thought I was okay and could manage it 'cause I felt restored, but I got to suffer side effects from the medication I began to take from around that time. Thinking like "No, I can't take it any more" every morning, I asked to postpone some of the works; recorded TV programs taking oxygen cylinders with me - I wanted to do my work by all means, once I promised to do it. I didn't want you to have terrible experiences again like that suddenly-cancelled show in Tokushima two years ago when I was on tour. I guess I still haven't forgiven myself for it. It took time for me to have the courage to tell the people around me that I needed to take a rest . . . I am very sorry for my taking time to make a decision resulted in more trouble for everyone. I had advance notice that I might become emotionally unstable because of the medication, or get out of condition and have no idea what's going on in my own body; but the type of medicine didn't agree with me and its side effects were more than I could handle! It was mentally painful for me as I couldn't sing properly and eventually I couldn't keep up with the physical change beyond my control; ups and downs of emotion which swung past the MAX mark on the meter. In the end my office and Toshiba-EMI suggested that I take a rest - it made me feel relieved and at the same time miserable, honestly.

So . . . after the announcement I received your warm & tender words which melted all of my strained heart and loneliness hidden inside me; I wished I could have taken a rest much earlier, or hung in there a little longer . . . People of TV/Radio stations, magazines were very understanding of me though I should have troubled them much. I also felt mass media people were very kind to me. I'm deeply moved, and really appreciate them!!

Although I had to announce my operation since I decided to rest, now I think it was good to have told you this.

I guess you were surprised by this sudden news, but I bet I'm the most surprised of all. 'Cause you know, who could imagine a tumor being found on the first visit to the ObGyn! None of my friends have ever had the same experience and I just kept explaining the situation to the men in their thirties or forties to adjust my schedule, but these couple of days I've got emails from women of almost all generations (from junior high girls till women in their fifties!) who had the same disease, and that made me so relieved. In America it's likely girls commonly get to visit the ObGyn since junior or senior high, while in Japan we tend to hesitate to visit there unless there's some very compelling reasons - don't we? I hear this disease is increasing among young people, so girls who haven't been there yet, please! have a try for it before you worry about me, with a feeling like going into a haunted house! It's not a scary place at all, although it looks a little bit scary!

I'm so lucky I could have my tumor detected and removed early! In the night at the ObGyn ward I heard newly born babies' crying both from a distance and up close, and it healed me greatly. Still I'm aware in hospitals not all babies are given birth - some breathe their last. The voices of babies purely trying to survive made me reconsider my life! I got to experience the pain of disease and operation, and I learned to appreciate everything - being able to wake up, change clothes, smile, walk, wear high-heeled shoes and drink water. That's the fantastic side effect of the operation!! But more than anything else I'm happy that I can sing again . . . It's like, till now I hadn't been aware I loved singing; and I was able to feel tremendous sense of fulfillment and peace of mind when I finished making the album, all the more 'cause I reached it after overcoming many struggles. I was so glad I was not alone . . .

I can almost thank the tumor for has given me the chance to take bad things out of my body and get a lot of good things instead! (Am I going wrong somehow?? Anyway I'd like to thank the doctors of the hospital very much!!) So please don't worry - I promise you I'll be back, after being upgraded!

Maybe I am telling you too much in one go - I'll write you again soon, little by little.

Thank you very much.

(NOTE by Nuuk)
ObGyn ... Obstetrics and Gynecology.