Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Everything's Coming Up Roses

Standing in the kitchen, staring at the dishes in the sink, I am overwhelmed by a novel feeling.

I’m free! Free of cancer. Free to live. Free to write my book. Free to travel. Free to fall in love. Free to do whatever I want.

On the one hand, I have been cancer free since the day I had the surgery, fourteen months and twenty-three days ago. On the other hand, the doctors don't give one the 'all clear' until five years have passed. For the whole of this year I have lived constantly with a barely submerged dread that it might return. In reality, nothing has changed since the day before yesterday. But somehow in my mind this feels like a major turning point in my recovery.

Today’s outing to Harley Street is to see my psychiatrist. “Fill this in,” he hands me the standard depression multiple-choice questionnaire:

Do you have thoughts of killing yourself?
  1. Yes
  2. No
  3. Goodbye!

Do you sleep more than usual?
  1. Yes
  2. No
  3. zzzzzz

Are you confused?
  1. Yes
  2. No
  3. What?*
...and so on.

“This is remarkable,” he remarks, “Last time you scored 31. Now it’s 17. You’ve gone from severely depressed to only mildly depressed in a month.”

I beam at him.

“Whatever you’re doing, keep doing it. I don’t think I will need to see you again. Stay on the anti-depressants for another eight months. I will write to your GP.”

*Not the real answers.


Shotgun said...


canalily said...

You're not kidding!

linden said...

awesome news :)

Singularwoman said...

Dear Canalily, we met at the autobiographical writing course in july...every now and then I check back and see how you are doing...well this is just wonderful news...and your writing is as fresh wonderful as ever, with love from Judy

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, Im at the beginning of that journey and reading your blog is really inspiring me I am still pretty scared and am single facing this now. I have my family and friends who are all brillaiant but this site is amazing. Thank you x

Ruth Howard said...

xlove to you I'm loving my Byron Katie meditation at this time myself...and planning another Byron Bay escape via our respective dad's for the summer.

I' gardening for the first time since I was about 18-but still have gypsy thoughts!