Confidence… and new growth

Only three weeks since diagnosis… feels like a lifetime.

I am starting to feel a bit stronger, a bit more in control, a bit less terrified and shocked, a bit less overwhelmed by tiredness and the effects of the drugs, a bit more demanding about what I want from life, and a bit more bored and wondering how my life is going to be over the next year or so.

Last night, I had a tentative conversation about the possibility of cycling today. I felt and still feel very nervous about the idea. My friend was very encouraging, saying that actually cycling on the flat (fortunately, it’s very flat where I live) would probably be less tiring than walking. So, with much trepidation, a plan was hatched… my friend would cycle with me, so I might feel a bit more confident, less scared. This felt HUGE!!!!!

I am so lucky to live just 5 minutes from a delightful nature reserve… with lots of wild birds, trees, river and large ex-gravel-pit lakes, which I have very much enjoyed dog-walking and cycling over the past three years.

Unfortunately, this morning I woke up in pain, twinges in my ribs under both breasts, like someone poking a finger hard in the same two spots. Just rolling myself over in bed was decidedly uncomfortable and I had to use the bedpost and door handle to lever myself out of bed. It was sadly not the day to jump on a bicycle!

In fact, I spent a substantial part of the day dozing on the couch. And that’s just how it is. I can’t tell yet, from one day to the next, how I will feel, how tired or energetic I will be, whether my head is clear enough to complete bureaucratic forms or make serious phone calls, or if I just have to loll around feeling shaky and staring into space.

Mostly, I wonder how much of my sense of being able to do things is down to confidence, or lack thereof. I know that my blood count is low, so I know I am likely to get tired and breathless and maybe that I CAN’T do some things. But I don’t know how much I CAN do. I don’t fully trust my body or head to do what I want. The frustrated part of me just wants to get on and do things, but I know I have to take it easy.

I am starting to wonder how much “taking it easy” is simply being scared of overdoing it, of tiring myself, of maybe discovering that I can in fact do more than I think…? More on this later, I’m sure.

Later this afternoon, my friend and I sowed some seeds into seed trays. I was able to wash out the old seed trays at the kitchen sink, but then my back began to hurt and I had to sit down and just direct my friend in her endeavours. Nonetheless, a successful project… now sitting expectantly on the window sill of my back porch are trays of sweet corn, tomatoes, courgettes and sweet peppers. Great team work!!!

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