A feeling has underpinned everything since I was diagnosed with Stage 4 Malignant Melanoma. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, or really explain it to anyone. Until now. I’ve figured it out. Everything feels temporary.
If you have no idea what I am chatting about, have a read of this post, where I talk a little bit more about my diagnosis. It was back in 2016, my treatment worked better than any doctor could have imagined, and I am still here nearly 2 years later. And for much longer I hope, lol. But that’s kinda the point of this post.
It’s human nature to have a bit of a life plan in place. Whether that’s travelling the world and never really settling down, high flying career plans, or simply wanting to get married and start a family. Even if we’re not achieving those things, we all have an idea of what we imagine our lives to be like one day. To have those ideas means you have some sort of certainty over the length of time you have left on this planet. Certainty that you will be able to achieve whatever it might be, no matter how long it takes or what you have to do to get there. We have a right to take life for granted, because, why shouldn’t we?
Sometimes I feel guilty for still worrying about my cancer. I shouldn’t think about whether it might make me sick again because, well, we get what we wish for don’t we? I believe that in all other aspects of my life, so why not this? Ok not just wishing lol, but truly visualising something and taking the steps to make it happen. Actually, writing that down just helped a lot, because in fact, I’m not visualising it happening again. I’m not doing anything to make it happen again. I’m just scared that it will happen again.
Would you believe me if I told you that barely 10 minutes goes by without me thinking about what happened? Probably not, because I don’t show “cancer” on the surface. I seem like any other person. And that’s how it should be. I don’t want you to look at me and think “cancer”, but it doesn’t mean that I don’t feel it.
I promise you I’m getting to the point. There’s only one person who really feels every little bit of this journey as much as I do, and that is Ross, my husband. 90% of the time, I will worry about saying something out loud, for fear of it not making sense, but he get’s it. So when I told him that I have this underlying feeling that “everything feels temporary”, he instantly told me he knows exactly what I mean. The relief to know that it wasn’t just me, and the validation that he gave me made it real. This is the bit where I have to try and articulate myself properly on this, lol.
I don’t truly care about my job and work in general as much as many other people, because I constantly just think, well this could all disappear in a second, why does it matter? This one is twofold, because in fact I honestly don’t think you should care about work too much. Even if you love what you do, family life and friends is always more important.
There’s no real desire in me to switch jobs, employers, chase promotions, because I feel like this isn’t going to last forever anyway, it’s just temporary.
I’ve slacked a little on the interior jobs that I love doing so much at home. Pottering about and changing things because that’s what I love to do. Because, well, what if I’m not going to be here forever to enjoy them? It’s pessimistic, I know it is, and this comes back to the guilt I have around thinking about the cancer, but sometimes I just can’t help it. What if I waste all my money on doing the bathroom up, when I should have been spending it making memories?
This one needs to go. I’m getting back into the interior stuff that I love. It’s the thing I keep for myself, and I love the satisfaction of getting a job done.
And everything else
My marriage. Our future as a little team taking on the world. The holidays I want to do and the places I want to see. It all feels temporary. I’ve lost my certainty. I feel like I can’t count on anything, or rely on any plans that I make. It could all change in a second.
Have I made sense? Will any of you understand what I am talking about? Maybe not, but it feels good to get it out of my system. There’s two sides to this though. Yes it’s really shit that I’ve lost something that we should all be able to take for granted, but I’m working on making it a positive. Allowing it to push me to say yes to new opportunities. Pushing me to persevere with this blog, because it’s something I love way more than the day job. Reminding me to keep planning those adventures with my husband, because that is what life is all about.
P.S. If you enjoyed this blog post, you might like to read about how we should throw life’s timelines out the window, and why ageing isn’t so bad.