Facing a fear that you cant run away from

"It's back".

Just two tiny words but on those worlds, the world can completely turn upside down.  And that is what happened to me 3 weeks ago.  Now, all the skills I have been developing and using to help others face their fears are needed on my own doorstop.  

The cancer first came in 1995.   I was in my mid twenties but still a little girl in my Mum's eyes and she did not tell me about the tumour.  I found out only when my brother called me to tell me that what I thought was an exploratory op was actually to remove a tumour.  I just made it to the hospital in time to walk down to theatre with her and on the way down she kept saying, "I am going to be fine, I am going to be fine".  

I will never forget her first words when she next opened her eyes, with pipes coming out of everywhere, machines bleeping endlessly: "I told you I was going to be fine!"  The op successfully removed the tumour and it had not spread.

A few years later she got peritonitis and after an op was on life support for a while - but again, her desire to live was high.  In 2014, another tumour was found and the Consultant advised me that she had a 25% chance of making it through the operation.  She wasn't ready to say goodbye, nor was I - and she defied those odds.

So I had started to believe that she was invincible, she had cleared unjumpable hurdles, and I wanted to believe she would be around forever.

So when the phone rang on that Sunday morning and after the normal "How are the kids?" questions, those words came out.

"It's back."  Four tumours and a decision by the medical team that the only treatment available was palliative.

So this is now the start of my journey in facing my fears - the reality that I am going to lose the person who has been present in my life from the start.  The fear of a future without her in it.

It is my hope that by sharing my experiences, others may know they are not alone.  I hope that I can use my own resources to get me through this journey in one piece, to help my children learn and be stronger people for it.  And if along the way, I can help one or two other people who may be following similar journeys, or facing whichever fears are chasing them, then that will help me stay strong.

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