This time last year I had to deal with midnight guests sneaking into my room. Fear and mistrust arrived, uninvited and unwelcome. Very unwelcome…
A new lump in my breast had popped up during the night and ignoring it was my go to response. ‘It’s probably nothing,’ I’d told myself. And yet sleep eluded me. Ah, how many times must one face the same lesson, before learning sinks in?
The following morning, I’d wound my way along the coastal road and taken some comfort in the gentle waves lapping against smooth rocks. The news was about to begin and I’d leaned forward to turn the radio off. I had my own happenings to mull over. By the time I had taken the Pinelands turn off, my mind was made up. I would say nothing, let Dr G examine me and fetch my new chemo regime from the pharmacist. No need to rock the boat. A problem ignored is a problem solved, right?
The mask may have covered Dr G’s reassuring smile, but her piercing blue eyes were trained not to miss any signals. She’d known. I confessed and allowed her expert hands to examine me thoroughly. Her verdict of scar tissue was confirmed by a needle biopsy and I could breathe once more.
The drive home was a breeze and all anxiety vanished into the fog, which was now creeping over Bakoven. I was met at our gate by an aloof Archie and my gentle Xena. Even the offer of his favourite treats did not change Archie’s mind. He was fed up with me for a reason I could not fathom and forgiveness would not be forthcoming for many hours.
A full year later and I’ve weathered the cancer/covid journey thus far. My 13 months of treatment were successful, I have a respectable mop of hair and even my eye lashes reappeared eventually. I have been through the first of the three month check ups, packed up our home of 30 plus years and moved into Hemel en Aarde. Sadly, the threat of Covid is still with us and all the trauma and grief it continues to bring.
Twelve months ago, my former principal and mentor succumbed to colon cancer and left a gaping hole in the DGS world. However, her legacy lives on and her contribution to education has opened many, many doors for the hundreds of hearing-impaired learners who passed through her hands. It was under her guidance that I came to fully understand the concept of excellence. She simply didn’t accept anything less.
Despite the times we are living through, I feel blessed. I am grateful for every new day and I do not take a single moment for granted. We are on this blue planet to experience happiness. I may have said this before, but here’s a little reminder… it’s an inside job. Only you can create it.
And so my journey continues. I wonder if I should phone to book my next appointment with Dr G or postpone it. After all a problem ignored…