If I was a time bomb I’d be set to self-destruct right about now. I’m battling my demons. It’s pretty busy work. You have demons too, right?
Papermachéd flesh covers my stony belly. The creaky valves of my heart chamber click in and out in a steady repetitive rhythm. My heavy lungs inhale oxygen. Reminding me I’m still alive.
The thing is, for every demon there is an angel fighting equally hard on the other side. I keep asking my angels if there’s an easier way to relieve the pain.
All that pain we hold in little pockets has to be relieved somehow. Some people’s pockets are bulging with it. Some people never admit it. But you can’t get an exemption from pain. It’s the great equalizer.
I’ve never tried illicit drugs in my life. But when I was having chemo I was given an assortment of pharmaceutical drugs to relieve pain. Some of the best highs in my life, right there in the middle of the cancer ward. Incongruous and unpoetic.
There are things that help me get through the exhaustion of each day. Some of the them are trivial. Some of them aren’t great for my health. Most don’t make sense. But does pain EVER make sense?
I’ve just come back from visiting my family in the Blue Mountains. My husband stayed at home so I was solo parenting. Doing it on my own almost crushed me. It was a hard trip for other reasons too. I survived, but I’m feeling more exhausted and lost than ever.
The trip showed me that I still have no idea where my home is. Or whether I should stay or go. I truly have no clue where I’m going.
The trip also showed me that I hate being dependent on someone else for help. But because of my health, I can’t do it alone. I long for my independence again. There’s something so empowering about standing on your own two feet. I did it alone. See? I was strong!
But I’m not strong. Not right now. I have no happy endings. But I do hold a speck of hope. It means gathering all my strength to pull off the biggest life recovery effort ever. I know I can do it. It means calling on a multitude of angels. Pleading with them.
The other night I was driving through streets in an unfamiliar town in the mountains. My nearly 4 year old hero girl worried from the backseat.
Mum, are we lost?
Before I could answer she added more.
Don’t worry Mum, let’s follow the light of the stars. They will guide us to an angel. And the angel will guide us all the way home.
And that’s exactly what we did.