An Incubus has visited

Cancer has become this house.

I have thrown the windows wide. These dark dank demons who have eaten our peace. Who have drawn the air from our lungs and sucked the pleasure from the little everydayness of our dull lifes. The shedim must leave this house.


mazziḳim, lilin and tilane.


Demons of the dark and the evening. The demons who harm and hurt.

An incubus has fathered this tumour that makes us cry and twist and despair.

The news from the Consultant yesterday was poor. Mum cried. She went to see her sister and was bathed in her tears (auntie Margaret is a determined weeper and wailer). She visited her remaining brother who nodded, bowed and went silent (Unce Iain is a determined raconteur, a man of laughter and then some).

And then she came to this house and my brother arrived fresh from his ward rounds and she washed dishes and laughed at Jamie’s poor jokes and smiled and said Oh well. And insisted she pay (too much) for the takeaway which was delivered because none of us adults had the energy or the ability to make a meal (who can think of food when the soul is sickening and an incubus has fathered the tumour that forces us to stare so long and hard at life and living and what it means to be alive).

She has refused any surgery until she has her holiday. She wants to have her July month. Palma with my wee ones for two weeks then Almoradi with the rest of us for the remainder.

My brother tried to insist she let him phone the Consultant (a man he knows). But my Mother can be determined and she said no.

As for me – I have gone into a self-regarding little mess. Feeling intense and ugly anger and rage and self-pity. And am at home unable to face the demands of work. The truth of the cliche revealed in all its mean glory. That there are more important things…


We must and we will recover from this.

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11 thoughts on “An Incubus has visited

  1. Your mother's a strong woman, let her do things her own way.
    It's how my husband deals with his illness having gone through all sorts of hells with treatments.

    All my my sympathy to you and your family – it's feeling unable to help which is the worst, I think.

  2. An incubus I have encountered both in my own life and in my family. You have all my sympathy, but Fly is right. Your mother must be allowed to deal with this in her own way and retain whatever control she can, rather than give in to feelings of helplessness and hopelessness.

  3. Thanks -all.
    Mum is certainly a strong woman and I really do agree that it is very important that she negotiate her own path through this.
    Mum also has faith – and I know she will appreciate prayers…
    We are all adjusting to the news. It is as thought our world shifted on its axis. But are only now too aware of the many many people currently going on the same journey.
    This is life. Hard complex difficult wonderful. Red in tooth and claw and yet sublimely supremely painfully beautiful.
    Thank you again. You are all part of my life and for that I am grateful.

  4. Prayers indeed, as I too have faith. When I had my two diagnoses of cancer I really valued other people's prayers as I found it very hard to pray for myself.

  5. There is no point in me saying anything about prayer and faith in a deity because I have none.

    However having cancer and having a great deal of experience of cancer in others close to me (which simply makes me one of a great number of people) I can say that being positive is the only way to be. It will not ensure the cancer will go away. However being negative and looking on the black side will ensure that your Mum has a bleak time and that getting over the cancer will be that much harder.

    I cannot believe that after all your family has gone through you will not all be positive and recognise that there are so many more important things to ensure that your Mum gets over this.

  6. Such a tough piece of news for your mum and then all of you to hear and so difficult to know how to support her.

    Your mum sounds a wonderful woman and I am sending love and positive thoughts to her, to you Yvonne and to all your family.

    Look after yourself too please. This is a nasty shock. I have had some experience of this and know that shock can make you feel very strange.

    xx

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