I wonder… Do the trees sing in Africa at the tail end of the day, as the sun drifts to the west, dragging the light, the colour bleeding from the sky in its wake, causing such rejoicing from the branches? Does the African kingfisher wear a smart, shiny cobalt jacket, slung over his shoulders, catching the early morning light, just like his cousin in Yangon? Does the frangipani blossom peep shyly up towards the African sky, pleading for just a few drops of rain, in return promising to release their scent into the surrounding air? Does the water lean to the right when it slips downwards from an emptying washbowl just like it does further north on the other side of the equator ? Does it rain at four in the afternoon in Africa, flooding lanes, prompting laughter and annoyance in equal mix? I wonder… What language do the frogs speak in Africa? Would they understand their Burmese friends as they revel and splash in the mud? I wonder so much about this continent that I have yet to properly meet. And soon I will wonder no more. Yangon, June 2016
It is over a week now since the Big Check and for the first time in what feels like forever, I feel I am finally moving forward.
I have found myself using corny expressions to describe how it feels, and corny they might be but they also feel highly accurate. I really do feel as if a curtain has been lifted and I am able to see much more clearly ahead of me.
I didn’t realise just how much things felt as they were “on hold” and how much I was pinning on the Big Check. I have been reluctant to make any plans, and even things like colouring the new hair has been avoided in case there was anything which meant more chemo and losing it all again. No point in colouring it and then it all falling out. Similarly there was no point in booking a break and then finding I had to cancel because I needed treatment again. I even felt hesitant about getting a prosthesis which was more of a match – in case I would lose its match! I know this all sounds extreme, but that is an illustration of the games that your mind starts to play once you have heard the cancer word.
But now I have had the Big Check, suddenly I feel as if I can finally look ahead and move forward.
Earlier I described life following a Breast Cancer diagnosis as a bit like having a lens through which I now see everything. That is still the case, but since the Big Check I find that the lens has been adjusted quite dramatically, and my vision is clearer and sharper. Just like getting new glasses in fact!
The result of this is that I very much hope that life will feel less dominated by cancer. The fear of course will not disappear, and I know that nothing is guaranteed. But for now, I can move forward with new priorities.
I hope that this might be reflected in the blog too. Cancer is still a big deal, and will continue to provide the “inspiration” as well as information and news, for much of its content. However, I think it will be balanced by more news and insights of life of the Feisty Blue Gecko, and might be a little more like the original blog.
So in that spirit, I am happy to update that we in fact rushed back from the big check in Bangkok last weekend. And the reason for that was to attend a wedding here. What better way to focus on the future than by sharing the marriage of a lovely young couple and being part of the celebration of their future life together and indeed the future.
And now I am preparing for a return to Bangkok next week. For the first time in well over a year this will be my first trip to Bangkok which is not for medical reasons. Visits to Thailand used to represent a break from the intensity of work wherever I was based at the time, as well as an opportunity to stock up on essentials not available there and of course yummy Thai food! I really thought that my treatment time and the frequent visits to Bangkok would actually change the way I felt about visiting the city and somehow “spoil” it for me. Well, I am amazed and delighted to say that I am ridiculously excited about my forthcoming visit to Bangkok (for work reasons) – and I have to say that this has quite taken me by surprise!
That must be a clear signal that I am really moving on.