Jane Ballot

Being me in the world

Moving Onwards

I am not strapped up on my right side. Well, not completely. I have the tape that physios and OTs put on various parts of the body to help with a whole range of things, from what I can gather. Unfortunately, my strapping is just brown(ish) and not any of the other, cool colours people seem to get on their shoulders and knees.

It’s there to help with the drainage of the area under my arm, which is swollen thanks to having lymph nodes removed. The ‘lump under my arm’ feeling tends to vacillate, which is apparently a sign that it is not all scar tissue etc, but must be some swelling too.

I have also been having pain in my right arm, stretching along what looks like a vein that may have thrombosed, but I’m not sure. If this is the case, then it makes me think about the effects of the chemo. I had one lot of chemo in my right arm, which must be 9 months ago now. If the vein is only thrombosing now, then what else is the chemo still doing to my body? And what has it done in the meantime?

Some things do give us a different perspective on life.

I have given up thinking that I am anything of a fraud. I am simply a person who had cancer in my own way, which is what every single ‘cancer patient’ is. This disease/condition is common in many ways, but definitely strikes everyone individually.

Fortunately the whole of life is about individuals doing things their very own generic way. It would be incredibly boring if it weren’t.

Why should cancer by any different then?

Everything we do is about moving forward during this journey of life, about making the most of what we have and about striving to move towards where we may want to be. The trick, I think, is not to lose sight of what is around us on the way. And never to take those who are on the journey with us for granted.

Sometimes I am given a hint of exactly how this whole cancer thing has affected someone / those around me and I am humbled by the depth of feeling.

It happened. It has gone. Mostly. Yet, too, it never has, not for me and not for those closest to me.

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