Let it all uncoil.
One word at a time.
To begin again.
Here is my view right now.
The first moment of stillness in months.
Bright new morning.
I’m sorry I’ve been away.
I feel like I’ve been a sailor on the seas, and this is my first day on dry land. Legs are steady. I’ve had a good night’s sleep. Hello there.
I should start by saying Happy New Year. It’s bloody March. Can you believe it? But that’s how long its been since I’ve written a word here.
A couple of things have kept me away. Firstly there was a huge total-house renovation project that took exactly 4 months to complete. I will tell you more about the enormity of that journey, soon, I promise.
But secondly there was my health. And I hate banging on about it – because exciting writing material it is not – but its my reality and impacts me so greatly. It’s not until we lose health that we me miss it. I imagine its like a soft warm cloak. Inconvenient if lost for a few days, but the longer its gone the more you shiver and yearn for it.
I have been sick for so long now. By sick I mean permanent flu and head cold, that turns into tonsillitis, and then turns into bronchitis. A cycle that takes about a month to finish, then it starts all over again. Rinse, repeat.
At first I thought I was unlucky. Then I suspected I was run down, or the late effects of chemo had depleted me to the point of not being able to fight infections. Then I suspected the renovations were to blame. Then I suspected I had a strange virus.
There’s some truth in all of the above. But in the last few weeks I finally got some answers. It turns out my sinuses are chronically infected, a case of being stuck and unable to clear even with antibiotics and medicine. Any germ that comes my way has no hope of leaving. Do you know how validating it is to finally be heard by a doctor and taken seriously? All those symptoms? I hadn’t imagined them!
The answer is this. I will have an operation on my sinuses in a few weeks. Apparently it will help. Apparently it will be an ordeal. But it will mean not another day of feeling sick. I’m counting down the days. I’m nervous as hell. All my post-traumatic fears of medical procedures have come back to haunt me. Hold me as I go through the fire. But I’m sure it will be worth it to get to the other side.
There’s nothing like a permanent case of the flu to kill one’s writing mojo. It kills every other bit of normal life too. How I’ve been able to function enough to care for my kids is a miracle in itself. I just do the basics. Survival mode. They are fed and loved – that’s all that matters.
The other day I was being hard on myself. I was rabbitting on to my husband about how this mother or that mother cooks – I mean actually cooks – every night for their kids … and then “if only I had that kind of energy”. He told me gently: Stop. To stop comparing myself to other women. And then, “Do you know any other 42 year old mother with a 3 year old and 5 year old who is recovering from leukaemia and suffering from chronic health issues and doesn’t have family support?”. The answer was no. So I shut up. Right then.
Today I’m starting to feel hope. Something I haven’t felt for a long time. I believe one day soon I will feel better.
Hope pulls me to the keyboard to write again.
Hope unthreads one word at a time.
I’m all dusty and creaky.
But I’ve begun.