The most wonderful man has left this earth far too soon to Liver Cancer.
If ever you needed your day to be awakened in a Cancer clinic in walks this man. I’m sitting there minding my own business and then two names are called for the usual weight:BP check before you see the consultant. Suddenly I see this man walking beside me who says ‘should we dance together down to the weighing room?’ I burst into laughter – this got my attention.
I was weighed and then he was and we sat outside the room. We started talking about cancer and then family. Family was very important to us. The passion I could hear about his children was refreshing. During our conversation something strange happened- I realised that I was laughing in a Cancer clinic for the first time in 9 months! It was 5 months post op so I certainly wasn’t ‘healed’ as they say- physically or mentally. However, this man made me really chuckle.
My name was called again and I went in to see my consultant and thought nothing more of our encounter. After the consultation I was making my way out of the clinic with my son who had gone to park the car earlier, when I saw my ‘clinic dancing partner’. I smiled at him and he stopped me, he said that everyone needed to talk about cancer a bit more, it was too hidden. He asked if I had an email address and at this point I introduced him to my son. He reached into his pocket and pulled out his card and handed it to my son! I was standing there with my hand outreached to receive it 😂 I was intrigued as to why he did that. Later I was to find out that he did it out of respect and courtesy to my son. He didn’t want him to think that he was trying to ‘chat up’ his mum in front of him AND at a Cancer clinic 😂😂
This man was intriguing so 24 hours later I emailed him to reintroduce myself and wished him all the best for the future. Three days later he replied but not with good news about his consultation.
This was the beginning of what became the most wonderful friendship in such a short space of time. Time was precious to him, I thought I understood it then but now he has gone I finally understand just how much time meant to him. They say walk a mile in another man’s shoes, that saying is so true. We can empathise as much as we can but until it happens to us, we will never truly understand.
I’d love to chronicle the whole story but I’m not sure about that- especially now, my heart is truly broken. I never knew how painful it would be but now I know because he can never call me 3-4 times a day, email me, walk with me, laugh with me, he is no longer here😔. Death is so final but not in his world so for that I am happy. Maybe I will see him again as a beautiful butterfly 🦋 in my beloved gardens this year.
Tonight after catching up with a beautiful friend I realised that I have not really expressed how painful my journey with cancer has been.
As I tried my best to comfort them over the last few days without being overbearing, I felt every ounce of pain they felt. They have the same cancer as I do. Pre diagnosis and pre surgery that pain was almost indescribable!!! I recall collapsing to the floor at home one Saturday evening and begging my adult children for help. They tried to help me but I could not stand up. I refused an ambulance so we traveled by car. This cycle repeated on so many occasions with multiple trips to A&E with no diagnosis. On one occasion I remember sitting on the dirty floor crying and saying I was going to die. I actually felt like my time was up. On another occasion I literally tried to climb the hospital wall – I was in excruciating pain. I saw the look on the doctors face when he pulled the curtain and saw the look on my face.
The sad part is that I didn’t feel believed because they had given me the maximum IV dose of Morphine. They didn’t know it was Neuroendocrine Cancer at this stage, the diagnosis came nearly a year later. Pain-settle-repeat, so the story recycled…
Tonight as my friend is in pain I feel so bad for them as I know how intense that pain can be. I know that I didn’t want to speak to anyone when the pain hit, everyone was my ‘enemy’. I used to will everyone to stop talking as I felt their voice reverberate through the pain.
Thank goodness for the NHS, thank goodness for the surgeons and the nurses.
Two years since you have been gone. I look at your photo every day. My screensaver is my constant.
I often wonder where you are, what you can see, what you feel, what you think. Sometimes I get upset with you for dying. I know this is unfair but I have no other way to process it. Sometimes I laugh with you as I flick through the memories in videos and photos but then I want more. The cruelty of a full stop on 12th February 2019 makes this a reality. New videos can never be created, new photos can never be taken and you will never be able to be with me again, not in the physical sense. When I see the Amazon Prime advert with the track ‘How long has this been going on?’ by Players it reminds me of you – I cry. The guitar strumming forces me to look at your photo in the room and I can visualise you playing your guitar to this track. You were an excellent guitarist, so incredibly talented. I love the song which brings me some comfort but sadness.
I know you would have so much to be proud of, for this I can smile.
I will always miss you every day, tomorrow and forever…🥰🦋💕