Elaine wrote this yesterday:
Today I went for my day at the hospice for the first time since May 15th. It’s a very cheery place and it’s good to be with so many different types of people all in the same position of having incurable diseases.
One of them K. made me feel particularly humble and grateful for the life I have had. Only 31 and with an 18 month old son, she developed MS when she was 25 after a life which seemed until then very successful. She done a Maths degree at Manchester University and then became an insurance actuary, a job which she obviously loved and found very fulfilling. Her MS has taken some frightening forms including 6 months of blindness from which she has now recovered. She discussed her situation very matter of factly without a trace of bitterness or whinging. She can’t walk without a stick, has to have bath aids and has had several falls luckily when her little boy has been at his nursery. She took such pride in her son who she even managed to breast feed.
We shared stories of the horrors of peripheral neuropathy which is one of the symptoms of MS and a side effect of the drug oxaliplatin which I have been given & our fears about becoming a burden. But it felt so wrong for me to be having this conversation with someone of my daughter’s age rather than my own or older.
If self pity creeps up on me I am going to try to remember K.