I’ll start by saying that I have no ambitions to join the police force, if anything this analogy is a sign of my love for crime shows!
As I’m sitting here in the cancer clinic for my three-weekly treatment, I’m also working from my laptop and to the best of my colleagues knowledge I’m “working from home” Being chronically ill like I am, I have gotten pretty good at my undercover life as a fully functioning member of society and I am aware of my privilege to be in a position to do this. Those who aren’t are in no way any less part of society.
But there are moments where I stop and think – what on earth is going on here.
This morning is one of those where I reflect on what has become normal for me, is probably unfathomable to your otherwise healthy 30 year old. I say this not for sympathy because in all honesty I have come to terms with my life and adapted my expectations so I am now incredibly happy with what I am ABLE to do (with a few mid week sneaky hospital admissions here and there)
I do chuckle to myself thinking of acquaintances reactions if I told the whole truth: oh yeah I was in hospital overnight for surgery and back in the office today… my plans for Friday night? Oh my oncologist is admitting me to hospital for IV fluids.
Jokes aside, the secret life never ends even when physical symptoms or ailments aren’t in my life. There’s always the mental symptoms when I’m going on with my life like – is my tumour growing? It’s stable now but what does this look like in a few years? I know that many people I’ve come in touch with through social media can relate to this feeling. You can be medically released from treatment but once you’ve had a diagnosis of anything, it’s with you for life in some form or another.
I’m so appreciative of my treatment team who have adapted their ways of talking to me and treating me with my age in mind. Not easy when your main specialists are colorectal and oncology …. I’m not the usual demographic that’s for sure. It’s had a huge role in me being able to achieve and experience things a twenty something year old, and now 30 year old, should.