Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Looking for trouble or looking for blessings?

Another fab photo taken by our very good friend Martin- thanks for letting me use it.

My mum and I often laugh about the fact that we don't have to look for trouble in our family because it always finds us easily. Anyone else know that feeling?

What we have learnt over the years is that it is easy to look through the prism of life and experience one problem and challenge after another. It is very daunting. But we have always learnt that if you look for blessings these are there too. Every day and even in the most trying of circumstances. It is a much better frame through which to see life. No doubt about it.

Some examples. Yesterday evening I found out that my chemotherapy has been delayed another week at least because of my blood count. This happened last time. I should be going in today as an inpatient for chemo cycle number three. So teddy and toothbrush are unpacked again. I told quite a few folk straight away as they were involved in the inevitable logistics of the week, and I received lots of texts and messages saying how sorry people are for me about it. I appreciate their kindness and concern. They think I will be keen to get on with my treatment,and to some extent they are right... but....

There is an element of disappointment and frustration in there, but it is just an element. It is is what it is, and what will be, will be. I decided at the beginning of this stage of the journey that I would just go with the flow, just float along in the river of life and not cling to the sides too much. It is a strategy that is working well for me. It is less tiring and frustrating than fighting every inch of the way.

My wonderful friend B is here to see me from Seattle ( yes- Seattle USA- she came over for a week to see me and her son). The postponement means I get to spend another day with her. She was our matron of honour and is teenager's Godmother and one of my oldest friends. It is a great support for me to have her here. We can spend more time catching up and drinking coffee. Excellent. She leaves on Thursday.

The delay is much better for other half. He is around much more next week and will be here while I get my treatment which takes pressure off the system all round. Much more relaxing for me while I am recovering from the impact of the treatment. Much less strain on him.

I get the chance to look after teenager while the rest of this exam week works its way through. I will be here to pick up, drop off and cook lovely healthy brain boosting food.

I can spend time with mum going to drink coffee at Blackwell House or Marks and Spencers. I can drive about and feel vaguely normal for a while longer. My brain is sharp, and my energy is great. I will still have hair for at least another ten days or so. I can go to Church on Sunday. I can have coffee after school drop off with my school mum friends tomorrow, Friday and next Monday.

And next week, I will probably get my treatment. It is waiting for me, and next week I will even more prepared, and stronger.

Sometimes it takes a magnifying glass to spot the privileges and benefits in a diffcult situation. I know this very well, but I getting to be a master at it, and it is definitely the best way and the only way to live in my opinion. Call it silver lining spotting, call it frustatingly optimistic, call it deluded. It maybe all of those things, but it really works.


Expat mum said...

Say hi to B and enjoy your time with her. Let me know when P is coming too.

Irritatingly Optimistic said...

And you are keepng the coffee suppliers in business by the sounds of it!
I think you need to get a new i Phone to keep you amused while waiting...(wink wink!)

l'optimiste said...

you are SO right! I hope you have a super week with your friend - sometimes things just work out for the best.
Have a fab week! Oh, and do send me some of that brain boosting food ;o)

Clippy Mat said...

that Life of Brian/Eric Idle song, "Always look on the bright side of life." would be appropriate, seems to be your anthem. good for you Jo.
Pat :-)

karen gerstenberger said...

I agree with you about this outlook - it is so much healthier all around and less stressful. It makes a person much more pleasant, and I think will lead to a happier, more fulfilled life. Who said "We can't control the circumstances of our lives; we can only control how we respond to them"? They were right.

It will be my privilege to pray with you as I walk & listen to Luther Vandross - and at other times, as well. XOXO

Snowdrop said...

Jo, I whole heartedly agree. The more you look the more silver linings you will find. If you don't look and simply dwell on the clouds, you will only see the clouds AND you will only give yourself stuff to worry about.

I'm glad you're having a good week and making the most of it.

I also think teddy probably prefers home too. ;-)


Anonymous said...

Your post reminded me of a poem called the River of Life:-

Life is like a river,
With it's twists and turns and bends,
With rocks and rapids,
Calm and still,
The river never ends.

Do not fight against the current,
For it will drag you down below,
Move at one with nature,
For the river will always flow.

Loopin said...

You are exemplary, as ever!

There is so much more to be enjoyed in life by looking for the silver lining in the clouds. Appreciating and finding positives in any situation you find yourself in is often very rewarding, and I'm sure you'll continue to reap the benefits.

Gill - That British Woman said...

Just popped by to say hello and to see how you are doing.

It's always good to have that "glass half full" attitude.

Gill in Canada

Maggie May said...

I love the idea of you floating along and not clinging to the sides.
it happened to me once (unable to have chemo because of my blood count) and I got all upset about it.
Since coming off chemo I seem to be feeling much more mellow & accepting of things. There is a definite change in me.
There is a blessing in every situation but sometimes we have to look for it.
Maggie X

Nuts in May

Anonymous said...

Sending you big hugs. Enjoy having your friend there! I know when I had my visitor recently it was even more of a boost than I expected- having friends around can make all the difference in the world. xx

Decadent Housewife said...

You are absolutely right. You have the right approach. First time mine was delayed I fell apart. But it didn't change anything.