Worry is a terrible thing, it steals the quality of life from right under your nose, reducing your world into a place of doom and gloom. We have been sitting on a massive worry these past six months and have refused to start the new year until we had good news.
I have desperately tried to keep everything normal, finish my WIP and keep the website going, but have to admit it was a poor imitation of the real thing, and I apologise for that.
I have not been sharing much of this with our friends and followers and this may seem strange after all your incredible support when Anita had that massive heart attack in 2020. Your love and good wishes pulled us through that terrible time, but when disaster struck again last year, it seemed far more serious, and we really felt that talking about it might make it worse.
Anita’s heart is still severely damaged, and despite having two stents and a pacemaker fitted, it only barely functions. When a series of lumps started to appear around her neck last year, the alarm bells started ringing again.
Because of the raging virus and all the hospital delays, it took months to have the lumps investigated. The consultant mentioned cancer and after deliberation, they finally decided to remove part of her thyroid. Surgery was a problem as they didn’t think her heart was strong enough, but they said that delaying it was not an option.
A nightmare time for all the family, especially Anita for she can’t abide hospitals at the best of times. My sister has never been ill and to be struck down by two life threatening illnesses almost at the same time seems very unfair. She made it through the surgery without incident, but we had to wait two agonising weeks to get the results of the tests.
By this time, we were all terrified and sick with worry, dreading the news.
The day of the appointment, I felt sick to my stomach but somehow kept a smile on my face. I think I held my breath when she was called into the consultants office, but five minutes later the door opened and she rushed out of the room, a massive smile on her face. We watched in amazement as she ran out of the ENT department to a standing ovation from the nurses.
By this time, we knew the news must be good, but I wanted to know how good. Just before we all reached the lifts, I caught her arm and made her stop walking. ‘Well,’, I said and waited.
She stood there and laughed at me, and I didn’t think she was going to say anything.
‘THERE IS NO CANCER,’ she shouted.
All the way home in the car, she kept saying those words, and her relief was wonderful to see. Despite the odds, her poor old ticker had survived the surgery and she was cancer free.
But four days later, we had to rush back to the hospital, as Anita was having trouble breathing. She is now back home, but it seems that worrying isn’t going anywhere after all.
She is looking better, although still very weak and breathless much of the time. The list of her medications grows ever longer, but … and you may have noticed this, none of what happened has stopped her writing her poetry.
Now all I have to do, is get my own head back together!
I hear a voice telling me to run
A hollow sound here in the darkness
Held by a disembodied voice
Telling me there is no touching where you are going
You will not be calling any place you see, home
That is the place you left behind
You will be given a chance to earn your way back
You will take nothing from this place
The darkness pulsed around me like a living entity
I thought of those waiting for me to come home
Jack, my husband
What have I done, why must I run?
I feel the rain on my skin, a memory
Jack’s whispered voice, here in the darkness
Maggie, you must come back, I miss you
A new voice nagged at the back of my mind
I am being pushed into the light
It’s not a place I remember
Strange faces, a woman tries to wave me away
Telling me I don’t belong here
Tears on the face of a small child pull me forward
She needs my help, her home is filthy
Her tear-streaked face a charcoal smudge
Her tiny hand clutching a red ribbon…
© Anita Dawes 2021