Tuesday, April 21, 2015

4 years, 2 months

Since last time…

I have had a funky chest infection which ran for 3 months and a bunch of antibiotics, IV and oral. It turns out that from all that coughing I developed costochondritis. I have some damage to the muscles in-between my ribs and all of the joints to my sternum and spine are inflamed. I found this out in my last trip to the emergency department and then being admitted. I was put on duragesic patches to manage the pain. I was in so much pain breathing that my brain was telling my body to breathe in a way that got ‘enough’ oxygen to the brain with the least movement. I had laryngospasm to add in there as well. Within a very short time for the first patch going on I realised I could breathe and realised that I had really been in quite a lot of pain.

I re-joined LiTES (Ladies in Technology Engineering and Science) and joined the School of Natural Sciences Social Committee. Unfortunately because of my struggle to breathe and consequently my inability to study, I had to defer again. I am very disappointed but I realise that it wasn't worth going through all the additional stress. I will be looking in to my back up plan more deeply. 

I spent a wonderful week with my Aunt. It was very restful and relaxed. I got to play with the dogs, sleep in and generally potter around (or not) as much as I needed. I had quite a bit of thinking time while I was there. It is always good to have another perspective and someone to bounce ideas around with.

My brothers and I have made a herculean effort and finally finished sorting through Mum and Dad’s ‘stuff’ at the other house. There will be some further filtering by immediate family and then by wider family. After that there will be a garage sale followed by a massive donation of ‘things’ if there is anything left. As soon as settlement goes through, the very last of the moving stuff around will occur. Then it is new carpet and moving in time!

There are a few people who have expressed their opinion that we should not move into “Dad’s” house. I am looking forward to it. There are a lot of good memories there. Many quiet conversations had of the years, more so towards the end while I was living there. There have been family celebrations, dinners, laughter and joy. There were semi regular ‘dinner and a DVD nights as well. So, what is not to love about moving in to a house with so much joy? I know there have been some sad times, hard times and very tough times, but life has those for everyone. It is a part of the natural cycle of things.

There have also been opinions bandied around that I bang on about Brain and tumours too much. What can I say? It is a passion. It is something I have a vested interest in and have done a lot of research about. I know a lot of people who have or have had brain tumours and seen their struggles in their journeys. On that note I have been accepted as a member of COGNO (The Cooperative Trials Group for Neuro-Oncology) It is not about me, it is not about being a pain in the ass. It is a passion and something I feel I need to be involved in.  If you don’t want to know, don’t listen.

It can be hard to understand sometimes and I am having an awfully hard time expressing it right now, in a very rudimentary form, ‘Don’t be your illness.’ You don’t need to give in and be cancer, mental illness, the flu, you can be yourself.

Eg. Fred has had a heart transplant. Fred has had a serious heart disease. Fred is still Fred. He is Fred to his friends and family. He is sometimes ‘the heart transplant man’ to medical professionals, but he doesn't have to be  the heart transplant. 

I am struggling to express this properly but I hope you will get the idea.

I noticed a funny thing today. There is versatility to people. The ability to perform whatever role is required and to do the best they can. There is a young woman who is a student, a mother, a ballerina and does martial arts on weekends. She can pull off a tutu as well as she can pull off an apron. We bend a mould into whatever form we need to be in and we just do whatever it is that needs doing. On Saturday I was at a party full of Ladies and wearing pearls. Monday I was a sister working together with her brothers through some, at times painful, separation of and claiming of our parents assets. Today I have been under the bonnet of my son’s car. Who knows what tomorrow brings. At the root of it all, I am me, take it or leave it, I am who I am.