Warning: I have this analytical brain. I overthink. I’ve always done so and it’s not easy to turn that function off. Maybe as a consequence of that I sometimes get melancholy. Just recently I had three consecutive days of misery, thick as tar, dragging me down. It’s hard to see any good on those days. However I’m resilient and I don’t feel that way most of the time and when I do I know how to deal with it. I still overanalyse things as is evident from this blog but these meanderings are not on my mind all day. I’m thinking mainly about lunch right now.
I feel as though I am back in my old life but I have changed in some vital way, therefore everything is different, yet externally it’s the same. I am trying to think of a good metaphor to explain but I am struggling. It’s like throwing a lump of limestone into a pond. There is a splash and ripples travel far across the pond and then it returns to calm, as though nothing happened. The rock meanwhile is on the bottom of the pond and slowly it dissolves into the pond. Pond weed grows on it in the short term, but over time it dissolves to leave no trace.
I returned to work this week, just a few hours. It was strange going in at the usual time. I signed in and went into the “man cave” and sat at my desk. It didn’t feel like my desk any more. It looked the same, it had accumulated more clutter but it was essentially the same desk. Some things were where I had left them, others had moved and I was damned if I could find them. The laptop looked the same but it had acquired new bad habits, the keys typing letters only when they felt like it and then too many at a time. Subtle changes.
I was excited to be back. Like a child returning to school after the summer holidays to greet friends he hadn’t seen for a while. It provided me with an insight. This is what it will be like when you’re not here. The environment changes slowly, things are imperceptibly different and that is how it should be.
I babbled all day, filling the air with silly jokes, questions and pet theories for this and that. I used a week’s worth, maybe more, of talk into a few hours. “He’ll settle down, he’s just excited to see everyone.” The following day I deliberately talked less and tried to focus on work. There was a satisfaction in completing tasks from my list. Inside a voice is telling me “it’s a trick”.
Yesterday I read two beautiful posts from people on different FB cancer sites. One person was told that their angiosarcoma was gone and that it was unlikely to return and the person was diagnosed as NED (No evidence of disease). I felt joy and wanted to break into the hallelujah chorus. What a fantastic thing to read. My brain latched onto that news. Maybe I will be NED. Maybe a Dr will say to me; “Paul, there is no sign of the disease and it’s unlikely to return.” Can you imagine that? To not feel the constant pressure of the scythe’s blade on your neck. That would be great. I could resume my life normally and not feel as though I’m walking on eggshells, trying not to break any, for fear of attracting the reaper’s attention.
Was this sense of joy and hope part of the trick too?
Meanwhile I’m getting smaller and smaller. Like an Alka Seltzer tablet in the pond, fizzing away, reducing piece by piece.