My memory is shocking. Gone are the days where I could correct anyone on ‘facts’ or ‘reason’ because of my awesome memory. I can’t blame it on baby brain or chemo brain or even menopause brain. It’s just gone. I actually have to calculate things when I’m speaking them; write EVERYTHING down. Work stuff I can get by, but I’m forgetting stuff to do with me and that’s what gets to me.
Most days I can rush through, because I’m in a flurry of spreadsheets and queries and people.
Some days glide because somehow the planets have aligned and everything goes as it should.
And then there are days when it seems like time stops; just for a fleeting second. Maybe 5 seconds.
But those 5 seconds are so long, it can feel like you’ve remembered every tiny detail from a time long ago, from the clothes you wore to the smell of a room to touch of a speculum.
Yesterday as I walked through the longest corridor Whipps Cross hospital has, on my way to my complementary therapy massage (that’s another blog for another day) and for anyone that knows this hospital, it’s split into junctions. Pretty clearly defined and there is always a hustle and bustle of nurses, surgeons and family members trying to find their loved one.
Junction 7 is for breast imaging and ultrasound. I usually walk past this corridor as quick as I can because even though I forget to grab a birthday card the day after the birthday or forget to take my lunch 4 days in a row I can remember that area and that day so clearly.
I remember walking in and seeing Sue the receptionist and being ushered to waiting room A. I remember sitting on the polyvinyl seats and shifting every now and again.
I remember holding Pete’s hand and digging my nails in as the minutes ticked by.
I remember saying that I didn’t want him to come into the scan room, that I didn’t want a fuss made.
I remember that I was wearing my red tunic top with sequin hearts and my leggings that were probably a tiny bit too thin.
I remember walking in and undressing and lying on the cold bed with a paper towel for dignity.
I remember the TV screen which less that two years prior showed me a 20 week scan of my Cub.
And I remember the image of something else on the screen.
I remember the technicians face of baffled complexity and equally the face of her colleague she asked a second opinion for.
I remember the deafening silence when they realised what they were looking at; the speed in which they turned the screen off as though to spare me.
I remember apologising for making a mess of blood on the bed when I got up (fuckwit was a bleeder).
I remember waiting for the letter to get me pushed up the list for a gynaecologist and the nurse to tell me that I was seeing my GP the next morning.
I remember lying to Pete and to myself when I said ‘oh it’s just a fibroid’.
I knew. I knew it right there and then that it was cancer.
I say the 2nd November is the day that changed my life but the 2nd October played a massive part too.
I can’t remember a card and I can’t remember my lunch.
I wish, oh I wish I didn’t remember this.