Monday, 31 December 2012

Approaching the new year

2013 will be the year that daughter finishes treatment.  She will have a final bone marrow in April to check the disease has gone, then that will be it.  Done.  2.4 years later.

Then we pick up the pieces of our lives.

It is interesting to me that people keep giving me 'lucky' things.  I have been given lucky trinkets and a beautiful little waving cat that I think is Chinese, and I am now the proud owner of two rather splendid laughing Buddhas.  I have been told that I need to feed my Buddhas in order for them to be lucky.  That figures: I don't function brilliantly without food either.  

I have been on a bit of a journey this year.  Having something so dark happen to your family forces you to reassess.  I hope that you aren't reading this and eyerolling at how cliche it sounds.  It is cliche, but I am finding it is because it seems to be the truth.

I have been reading self help books and popping ADs, I've even delved into the muddled depths of spirituality.  One thing I am noticing is that many branches of thought -whether mindful and rooted in the present, goal-orientated and aspirational on a material level, or tapping into the wavelength of some higher authority through religious/spiritual connections - all regard people as more fulfilled when we are being creative.  We do best when we are making things.  I see truth in this too.  (Don't laugh.)  I taught myself to crochet this year and it has been very soothing to sit and hook through some difficult times.  Last year, I really enjoyed making little felt decorations in hospital with daughter when she was in with a nasty infection just before Christmas.  

Of course I am not saying that your child has cancer so you should take up knitting and all will be well.

What I am trying to say is that having bad things happen to you takes so much away.  Sometimes it is nice to try and put some things back for yourself.  The things that you make aren't of comparable value to what is happening, but the process of creating something is another therapy, another thing you can do for yourself to weather the horrors around you.  Leukaemia treatment is a slow, painful process.  It is nice to feel like you can do something, anything, when most of what you feel is powerlessness.

So, I am being creative.  My new year's resolution is to try and create something every day.  I am not promising to be faithful to this if anything else bad happens - I can only come to this resolution 2 years down the line.  I would not have been able to do this in the early days .  I couldn't even read a book in hospital when she was first diagnosed as my brain would not let me.  This is the end of our journey (I pray) and us moving on from this thing that has tried to take away so much of us.  

I have been bought a sewing machine for Christmas, and I haven't ever really learned to sew properly.  I also write occasionally.  I am looking for something to add value to my life as I feel fed up a lot, and these past two years have shown me that getting all of my sense of accomplishment through my job is unhealthy.  I could lose my job in a heartbeat, and where would that leave me? (This is not about my family - of course I love and enjoy my children, but I have always wanted something for myself too.)

Hoping 2013 is a kinder and more creative year for all of us.  Happy New Year.  

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