Today is my birthday. And I am fifty. Im hoping if I write it in teeny little letters no one will notice ! This has come as a bit of a shock to be honest. Most people can psychologically prepare themselves for this milestone birthday but it has caught me completely unaware - mainly because I didnt expect to be here still, and neither did anyone else....not really.
Subconsciously Im sure it has been at the back of my mind but, not wanting to tempt providence, I had nothing special planned. I think I was hoping it would pass quietly, unnoticed, with a few cards
from the kids (with the obligatory 50 on the front) and maybe some flowers from Martin. Caroline, however, had other ideas and last night, together with her partner Trevor, took us out for a surprise dinner party at one of my favourite posh restaurants. We had such a lovely evening, fabulous food, wonderful company - a really special way to celebrate. I also found it very, very emotional to say the least.
Physically Im still doing really well - but emotionally Im struggling a bit. I didnt realise until last night just how much though. It seems to have been building up since Christmas when losing so many friends hit me very hard - harder than I realised. A part of me feels guilty for still being here - I know its irrational but I cant help it. Last week NICE met to make their final decision in regard to the 4 KC drugs but they wont be announcing it until March and if positive it wont be implemented until the summer. How many more patients will die waiting and hoping they can last that long? And there is nothing I can do about it. I feel so impotent. The results of my CT scan are looming next Thursday and thats playing on my mind too.
Naively I thought I had completed my own cancer journey a while ago - I had been through all the stages and come out the other side. But as Caroline pointed out to me last night it doesnt work like that. It is an ongoing, movable feast and not something you ever really 'complete'. She also pointed out, quite rightly, that I dont have to be 'Superwoman' all the time. Its perfectly ok for me to feel a bit down and stressed - in fact I wouldnt be normal if I didnt. Im very lucky to have such a kind, caring, astute friend arn't I?
It wasnt all doom and gloom though and we had plenty to laugh about last night too - Catherine, bless her, offered to do my make up. And I accepted - with a few reservations. She made a really good job of it and I went out with a full face of slap on complete with glittery eyeshadow and false eyelashes. Now Ive never worn them before and it is a very peculiar feeling, every time you blink you feel them wafting away. My biggest fear was that one would become detached and slide down my face settling on my upper lip giving me the 'Adolph' look !
Today we are all going out for a meal later. Without the false eyelashes this time. Last night they looked very nice but Im not sure I could carry them off in daylight - especially now that Im 50 !