2014 has been full of highs and lows. We welcomed our daughter into our lives and with her coming so much joy and happiness followed. Shortly after Elsie was born, my dear mum was diagnosed with cancer. It knocked me for six, it knocked all of us for six and the journey that has followed has been full of twists and turns. Twice admitted to hospital for very low white blood count and no immunity she has pulled through both times and never once complained. When her hair fell out after her first course of chemo, I felt a sense of grief. Not for me but for her. It was a turning point and suddenly became a very visual representation of her illness.
I am a firm believer that stress can impact on well being and my mum had a rough year in 2013 which I am certain contributed to her illness. She has shown immense courage and strength in dealing with her diagnosis, I have honestly never known a braver and more dignified woman than her.
I’ve kept this part of my life very private from this space, partly because it is such a raw subject, and partly because I haven’t been able to find the words to express how I feel about it. My mother has taught me so much in life, none more so than this year. I’ve learnt to be dignified, graceful, to avoid self pity at all costs and savour the moment. Not to dwell on the past or wish to return to it, but to embrace the present and relish the opportunities tomorrow may bring. I’ve realised our mortality is inevitable, and so is my parent’s mortality, and that has been really, really hard to accept.
I know my mum will get better, recover and hopefully, before too long she’ll be full of the joys of spring and feeling her old self again. Chemotherapy takes its toll and she’ll need to recover over time after her course ends, I’m under no illusion it will be an overnight relief.
Mothers are just so very precious the world over. They nurture, nourish and tend to their loved ones in a way that is remarkably selfless and full of love and the best intentions. She has done a wonderful job of mothering my siblings and I. I have never once questioned her love and have only felt supported and encouraged by her and my dad. For that I will always be grateful.
I look forward to many more years with mum. To making new memories with her grandchildren and enjoying more of the wonderful adult relationship we share.