Thursday, November 3, 2011

Eye of the hurricane.

I've been reflecting this early morning on where we stand (or perhaps it's hallucinating). Usually when a loved one comes out of surgery successfully and is doing well in ICU there is a large sense of relief. You can have some optimism about the future. I am grateful the relief valve is installed and that the pressure won't be a cause for pain. But I am acutely aware of the issues at hand and things that have been masked which will soon emerge. Such as her back and arm pain, for which we have no identified source or which can be addressed other than the symptoms. And the prospect of symptoms emerging relating to the new cancer in her brain, which can't be treated for at least ten days, if ever. And melanoma marching on in her lungs and other organs (including now in her abdominal cavity - yes, it's saving her brain but it is not without cost - that fluid is full of cancer cells). So the best analogy I can come up with is the eye of the hurricane. You've just survived the first onslaught of a Category 8 hurricane, that took place over seven months (counting from her stroke) and you"ve got a momentary respite. But you can see an eyewall right in front of you that is higher and fiercer than anything you could imagine.

The other day I was talking to someone and the subject of endurance came up. Endurance as in Shakleton's "Endurance" in Antarctica. A great book and a compelling true story. How do you keep going on when you've gone as far as you can. Is there a limit to what you can do? What do you do when you've reached the end of your rope?

I shall find out.

1 comment:

  1. I also leaned on the Endurance Story when I was first dealt the Melanoma card. I now consider myself a Shackleton expert, even to the point of having his portrait above my desk at work.

    "By Endurance We Conquer"

    My prayers are with your wife and your family on a daily basis.