Friday, October 9, 2015

In the blink of an eye everything can change

Well my holiday came to an abrupt end - V had experienced back pain for 2 weeks before I left and thought he had pulled a muscle moving a concrete post. I persuaded him to see the doctor and satisfied there was no slipped vertebrae or trapped nerve he was referred to a physio. It got worse and he was struggling even to get out of bed. I flew to the UK at that point and he continued with his next appointment at the physio, who was alarmed as he staggered to his next appointment. XRays and he was admitted to hospital for an op to inject filler into the spine to prop up his vertebrae - expecting an overnight stay in hospital, non invasive surgery and back to work two days later. That was a long three weeks ago. Since then - a lot more pain, 2 or 3 MRIs and the devastating news that there is a malignant tumour in his T6 vertebrae as I sat in my niece's kitchen in Wiltshire - stunned, shocked and angry about the unfairness of life. V has never smoked, hardly drinks alcohol and lives a healthy, fit outdoor life and if anything is over cautious about his diet.
I got a flight back as soon as I could and within days was on another flight to PE - With our travelling marriage/lifestyle and our 10hours drive away living arrangement we had to decide what the treatment options were and where treatment should take place but on Saturday the pain escalated to such levels that I booked flights and we left the lodge dramatically at 3am the next morning, boarded a plane with assisted passage at 6am, arrived in PE at 8am and by 8am the following morning he was in hospital being treated by a team of specialist, oncologist, dietitian and under the care of some wonderful, wonderful nurses on the Oncology ward in St Georges. So that is how your life changes overnight! He is positive and up for the challenge - radiation, chemo and a stem cell transplant - He has not lost his sense of humour and we have laughed about how quickly we have progressed to discussing bodily functions best not mentioned,  in a short time? Thankfully his doctor has a brilliant sense of humour too and while cancer is no joking matter - you can appreciate the absurdity of certain aspects.

I am so glad that he chose to be in PE for this treatment and PE has shown its true nature through empathetic and excellent hospital care and a stream of visitors wanting to show their support and cheer him on. So what is on our horizon? Well not a tractor in sight at the moment! Each day is a new beginning, every person responds in their unique way to treatment so we are getting used to the unknown and can't plan too far ahead ...but we can plan! I am so grateful for this second chance for us that some people are not given. A second chance to live life differently, a chance to express what is in your heart to those you love,  an opportunity to forgive others and more importantly to make peace with yourself, a chance to know your future is limited and not to waste a single precious breath on people or situations that are not worthy of it. Life will be different - Life will be better - Life will BE.

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