Sunday, 12 February 2012

A step backwards or moving forward?

More than most I know that life does have the tendency to force you sometimes not to take anything for granted and go into directions that you don’t really want to go in and boy was I reminded of this recently!

Having come out of chemo and to be honest still recovering especially with my blood sugars going up and down, feeling tired, apparently having low blood pressure, hard skin on feet and anticipating radiotherapy later that week, on coming down the stairs after a nap I slipped on the fifth step from the bottom and managed to break and dislocate my ankle at the same time!  I couldn’t believe it, of all the unexpected things to happen?  In A&E in great pain, an op the next day and then the next eight days in hospital and an anticipated eight weeks in plaster!  Not only could I not believe it, nor could anyone else – just don’t say life couldn’t get any worse because it did!
The day after my op something happened that was deeply upsetting and disappointing and from emotions that had been held back in check, I was so frustrated and angry, that they all came boiling out at once. I am not going to mention the actual incident here on my blog as it is still now raw and all too real, but suffice to say that those who I thought loved me, let me down in a such a way that it affected not only myself but particularly my son at a moment when we were both impotent and completely vulnerable to do anything about it.  You should know that I am completely fed up at being vulnerable especially at a time I thought I was moving forward.  My son lashed out unfortunately - on Facebook of all things which just made things worse  and although I don’t condone what he wrote in any way at all – I understood his pain, his anger and the unfairness of what had been done. With just some good communication and understanding the situation could have been avoided but unfortunately I do have some people in my life who feel that what they do and think is always right, don’t need to consult and should not be questioned and disagreed with, and if you do you are being ungrateful and judged harshly with very little understanding. My life motto is “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” and this act although which may have been seen to come from the heart certainly did not fall within this category.

I question now where has the love, the support and the friendship I once thought I had has gone being eroded away while fighting depression and then cancer and just trying to keep my own mind, body and soul together and carving out a life for myself and my son the best way I can.  I am not ungrateful, never have been, of any support I have had and those who know me or read my blog should realise that, but I do want to know what I have done that has been so wrong that has caused so many problems. Some of it I know is this blog in the first place, but this blog has been a lifeline to me and a story I have chosen to share and feel I should be respected for it rather than despised for it - it has not been directed at any one person, it has not been dishonest and represents how things have been and how they are with which I hope mainly with a positive slant.
Or is it that I put on such a strong face on to the world in my cancer fight that no-one thought I needed them and that I was not that sick or that weary and not suffering much.  Is it that no-one else thought they could say they were sick while I was sick with cancer so avoided me? Is it that I have become a much stronger person less vulnerable, less pliable more able to put my own thoughts and views forward and dared to disagree and question with what I was being asked to do, think and feel.  Was it only coincidence particular stresses seem to come up within the five days after chemo sessions when I was at my most vulnerable, most tired, and most sick?  These are questions that are never going to be answered but all I have ever wanted through this cancer journey is a little support without interfering too much in other’s lives and their own stresses – a visit here now and again at my worse times to lift my spirits, a kind message or a catch up phone call to keep me positive and laughing and to show they care.  I am grateful to everyone (friends and family and especially my dad who calls me once or twice every day and who is not that well himself and lives a fair distance from me) who did this because it has kept me going through my hardest times.

OK  OK – it’s out of my system now!  I am back to my old positive self, laughing again at a situation I cannot change not letting it stress me out and moving forward once again albeit with a plaster on my leg!  I am not stuck at home without friends and support – a kind friend cooked freezer meals for me and cupcakes, I have someone to come round and play scrabble with me and other word games which I love to do, my lodger has been completely wonderful despite the personality change around 9pm each night, colleagues and friends are visiting or have visits lined up in the future, calling and sending messages.  I have a daily trip each afternoon for radiotherapy each week day being picked up by hospital ambulance and these people really do keep me laughing.  I make sure I at least do one productive thing a day even if it’s only contacting my doctor to change my medication or on-line shopping (which is a challenge in its self) and I am hopping well around the house being able to feed myself and make a cup of tea! Even my son is doing his bit although he is fed up, stressed as well as coping with teenager hormones – he even comes to hug me more often!
The Sunday before I came out of hospital I cried all day with the frustration of absolutely everything - thinking I had gone a step backward and all those negative feelings just came pouring out of me – I just could not stop the tears.  I hadn’t cried for a long time and realised later that I had held them back far too long.  Now I am at home amongst the chaos of daily life again I realise that in fact that I have actually moved forward not backwards at all.

"Illness or disability takes away a part of your life, but in doing so, it gives you the opportunity to choose the life you will lead, as opposed to living the one you've simply accumulated over the years." - Dr. Arthur Frank

 “Unexpected change is the ultimate catalyst for life and it’s only after some time has passed after it has occurred that you realize you’ve been truly blessed for it. A keen sense of humour helps us to overlook the unbecoming, understand the unconventional, tolerate the unpleasant, overcome the unexpected, and outlast the unbearable” - Billy Graham 

It makes you stronger than you were before. With more change, comes more experience, comes more knowledge, and comes more opportunities, which you never would’ve been exposed to in the first place.” 

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