Jane Ballot

Being me in the world

Friday 24th July

The thing I hate most in the world is the feeling that I am letting (one of) my kids down, in some way – even if they don’t actually realise it, or even feel it at the time. It’s not about them, though, it’s about how I see things.

The only time I really get so frustrated to the point of ‘having a heart attack’ is if I am held up by something beyond my control, such as traffic, while on the way to do something for one of my kids – especially if some of the fault is mine, like I left wherever I was to get to wherever they are a little later than I should have.

Dani got both barrels today in a big way. We were trying to get to Mick’s school because he was participating in the Inter-house Quiz and I wanted to see him do his thing. This, of course, without actually understanding how the thing worked and when he would even be involved. It seemed as though every queue of traffic was in my way between point A and the school. Under those circumstances, I can reach the point of such annoyance and frustration that I almost (or do) burst into tears.

Of course, it happens so often that things are not at all so urgent or so fraught as I imagine when I reach my destination. And, mostly, the offspring involved is not even phased by my temporary absence, or my lateness.

As I said, it is not about them, but about me.

When, however, the journey I have to take is about me and the destination may be somewhat undetermined, I am mostly happy to let things happen as they may. I will, no doubt, experience some frustrations along the way when there are delays or things seem to get in the way. As long as there is no sense of me letting one of my kids down, I am fine.

So it has been with this cancer journey. Things have run their course and, mostly, I have been happy to go along with the timing and pace of things. Only when they impacted on the family’s lives, or I have thought that they have been inconvenienced because of something to do with me and the cancer thing, have I got upset and frustrated. Then, I suppose, it’s been about them, for me. Like when I couldn’t have the one chemo, because my blood count was too low and we had to delay leaving on holiday. The greatest upset for me was that, because of me, everyone else had to stay around for a few more days.

Strange how we see the world sometime, but that is, of course, how we negotiate it and make sense of things for ourselves.


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