Monday, 26 November 2012

English maidenhood 2012

On my way to the hospital this morning, Monday 26th Nov, walking past HMP Wormwood Scrubs, I met a young woman, aged about 23, who asked me where she could find a cash point. I suggested she should come along with me to the Hammersmith Hospital entrance where they have one. As we walked she told me she was on her way to visit her boyfriend, aged 24, who is now in the Scrubs doing five years for fraud.
Apparently he stole all her money and defrauded about 40 other young women.
"But I still love him," she told me, "and I have decided to wait for him until he gets out."
I felt that she wanted my approval and felt a bit harsh for not giving it.

On the bus back home I sat in front of two well spoken school girls aged twelve. I know that was their age as it was discussed as one of them told her class mate that her mother is 36 years old. She also has a sister aged sixteen. The two of them set about trying to work out how old the mother was when she had her first and second child. They could not do it. They struggled with the subtraction sum for most of our journey and never hit on the correct answer.
I was very surprised firstly because my life has been blighted by my inability to do maths, but I could do that one albeit using my fingers. Secondly because I have been labouring under the delusion that maths teaching has been improved in our schools lately. From the sound of them they were attending quite a "good" school. 

Sunday, 25 November 2012

OK I am back!

25th November, 2012.

I have been writing my blog on the Salisbury Review on line blog spot for a few months. That is all bad tempered political stuff,  not a place for random thoughts, or reflecting on the cancer which originally led me to start blogging.

It is now over two years since I took ill and had the dread diagnosis, ovarian cancer stage four, grade three, that was in May 2010 and despite predictions of doom, I am still here going strong!

My check ups are every six months from Feb, but I was surprised when the time of the 3 months check came, I felt anxiety, even though I didn't have to go for a check. My brain is still hard wired for the 3 monthly anguish it seems.

I wouldn't perhaps think much about the cancer at all now, if I didn't keep meeting other unfortunate beings who keep getting it.

On Saturday at my art class a middle aged woman revealed that she has brain cancer. She told me that it began with a polyp up her nose which her GP failed to diagnose. By the time they found it, it had developed into a rare form of brain cancer. When they operate she will lose the senses of taste and smell and perhaps her sight, and the tumour  could of course kill her.

She is a self-important, rather unfriendly woman but I felt bad for her of course. She is striking a pose of absolute strength and determination, even saying, "if I die, I die, can't do anything about it." Perhaps not the best way to face the future, but she will change as she enters the tunnel and goes along it, at what ever pace.

This morning I was thinking about her as I got ready for church. As I walked there I suddenly felt terribly tired, after the service I came home and went to bed. I dreamed that a large tumour had come up on my neck. The fear is all there in me, and other people with cancer act as "triggers" re-traumatising me, but I don't resent that at all. That is all part of my new life, post cancer, or "in remission" as people put it, which is  a word which also traumatises me, as my conscious, waking mind likes to believe  I am am cured.