Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Mapping out the terrain

Waking up this morning in a place I could finally give a name to felt remarkably good. I know it's not a place I would choose to be, but it's where I am, and  now I can name it, I can begin to look around and explore the terrain.

And at the moment, I find myself to be in a room, which is considerably lighter than I'd imagined it might be.

Which is good - great - but also a little scary.

Mike and I often quote (well, I say quote - can't actually remember the line so it's more a paraphrase) a line from - I think - the John Cleese film Clockwise.  The essence of it is "It's not the despair that gets to me; despair I can live with. It's the hope . . . ".  That's certainly been proving true of the way I seem to have been handling things these past few weeks. It's been easier, for me, to block out everything except preparing for the worst case scenario - because then you can't have hope taken away from you. So I have cheerily been assuring myself that yesterday's news was almost certainly going to be of the 'there's nothing we can do' variety, knowing that left me in a place where disappointment could not strike.

Now, let's not get over excited. The news yesterday wasn't massively better than that. The hope that was there was tentative, and it was conditional. If tomorrow's PET scan reveals more tumours, then it's  a hope that will be very short lived. But it is, for now, hope. Hope that, if it survives the scan, and lives and grows, even holds the tiny seeds of the word 'eliminate'. A word I really hadn't allowed myself to contemplate.

So today's first challenge, as I survey the room I'm in, is to let myself look at this rather lovely but unexpected guest 'hope' which is sitting like a lantern, flickering away on the window ledge. And by hope, I mean very specifically, hope that I might actually survive this physically. I've got buckets of other kinds of hope, more of which later, all of the sort that, not being conditional on me surviving, can't disappoint me or anyone else. But this hope is risky. I want to take hold of the lantern, because let's be honest, I really, really want to live for as long as I can. I really, really don't want to leave a life which is brilliant and a family who are . . . well, I can't even begin to find words to say who they are to me . . . and friends who have stunned us these last few weeks with the depth of love they have poured on us. I want to grab that lantern and never let it go. But . . . I'm finding it surprisingly hard. And it helps me to say that.

Enough for tonight, I think. Bit more exploration tomorrow.








16 comments:

  1. Lantern shining here for you tonight xx with hope all over it xx

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  2. I am so pleased that you are writing this blog, keep coming at us with those feelings!
    Thinking of you my love, good luck tomorrow. Hopefully nothing further will be found and positive thoughts can be given free rein. Xxxxxx

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  3. So glad you are blogging, Debbie. Walking alongside you all the way. Bring on the hope! Love you so much xxxxxxxxxxxx

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  4. We've cracked it - Emma Swarbs does blogs in Lent, but not Facebook.

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  5. How about if we all agree to tend the lantern for you, while you get some rest tonight? If it goes dim tomorrow it certainly won't be your fault. If it starts to shine a bit brighter, as we pray so earnestly it will, we will all feel the warmth of it.

    But of course the lantern will never go out (as you and I know in our best times.) Because (in the words written above Bede's tomb in Durham Cathedral) Christ is the morning star who, when the night of this world is past, brings to his saints the promise of the light of life and opens everlasting day. Amen and amen.

    Andrew

    PS Could you just clarify something for me Debbie. Does the full stop go inside the bracket like this .) or outside it like this ). At 53 there aren't too many people I feel I can ask without looking foolish!

    PPS I realise I just started a paragraph with "But."

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    1. Now you're asking . . . my instinct is outside the bracket, a sort of mathematical instinct, really,because it applies to the rest of the sentence which was also outside the bracket. If I ever knew the grammatical answer I now have a watertight excuse to justify having forgotten it ;) And bring on starting sentences, nay paragraphs,with conjunctions! All the best people do xx Thank you for lamp tending, and for so much else too. Your words will be finding their way into this exploration very soon. The ultimate light never in doubt, not for a moment, not yet any
      way xxxx

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  6. I am so pleased that you are writing this blog, keep coming at us with those feelings!
    Thinking of you my love, good luck tomorrow. Hopefully nothing further will be found and positive thoughts can be given free rein. Xxxxxx

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  8. Oh modern technology I hate it sometimes with a passion. I will blog when I have worked out how to actually publish the darn thing. Fingers x'd but don't hold your breath!!! xxxx

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  9. Yes yes yes I've done it wahoo!!! Luvs ya Debbie my little inspiration xxxx

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    1. That' my girl. You don't edit our magazine without being a techno queen xx

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  10. Thanks, Debbie. A flickering lantern is good, perhaps its simple presence is enough for now (though I imagine you might have already thought that). Go gently. All love for today xxx

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