Tuesday, 5 November 2013

The Matter of Time

It is a difficult balance - weighing what I feel I need to say against the impact of my words. Another moment where I know the reality of sharing information in a public way could come as a rude and unwelcome shock - and yet to be true to this thing I have committed to - and in some ways to process myself - I feel I have to keep going. I will say to the people who really love me right now, I am so very sorry if what I am about to say catches you off-guard or makes you feel sad. But I think you have likely read and seen enough that this chapter was expected, though perhaps not now. So feel free if you are not ready to go there...not to turn the page, as it were.
Sometimes a person just knows - information passes by osmosis into your bloodstream - winding its way to your brain and making you aware that change is happening. I guess it in part explains some of my recent posts -  as a visit to my lovely specialist yesterday only confirmed what my heart and my head already knew. That is that the lab numbers I have been trying so hard to have faith in are no longer reliable where my kidneys and I are concerned. It is a system in which numbers are derived based on an "average man" based on the levels of toxins in your body. In my case and particularly with the size I currently am - plus a marked escalation in my symptoms (the feeling crappy factor - a scientific term!) the cheery prospect of five more years has dwindled to "maybe" seeing 2014 through. He said that in his experience once the symptoms are felt - it is not a slow decline and his former olive branch of the prospect of significantly more time no longer applies. As I said, hearing him say it was not a tremendous surprise - my body has sent this message to me loud and clear for weeks now - and yet...well, let's just say that my drive home from his office felt very, very long. And if experience is my teacher, the full weight of this information will roll over me soon and when I least expect it. Just when I think I am prepared for this...in many ways, but some ways not, I chose this - and I have spent so much of my energy trying to make us (and by "us") I mean Kirk and I - ready for it...emotionally, financially, legally...I am hit in the face not by the theory of it, but the reality it is marching toward me and the pace is ever faster - it will not stop. I have acted on this information with a sense of urgency that was not misplaced. Right now I just feel numbed by it...like if I feed the dogs and clean the counters and write these words, it will go away. Yet I hear its approach - feel it when I breathe - see it when I am brave enough to look at my own eyes. It is coming...it is coming...it is here.

7 comments:

  1. Oh no. I don't think words can capture how we feel about you facing this.

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  2. Michelle, I don't know what to say when I read your words. I'm thinking of you.

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    1. Dear Ryan...it really is okay...you don't need to say a word. I know how much you care...not only on my behalf...but on Kirk's. Thank you for being such an amazing friend. We love you. And thank you Sarah...I know sharing these moments with me is very hard but I am grateful for your support.

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  3. Years ago, I started a trend in my family when I wrote to a much-loved second cousin who I knew didn't have long to live. I reminded him of the time the taxi failed to show up one Christmas to take me to the airport, and how one phone call brought him flying to my door to ferry me through the snow to my plane. I told him how much I was going to miss his sense of humour and joie de vivre. I told him that only the best loved people are nicknamed "Mrs. Taylor" (a nickname he loathed, but suited him completely). Finally, I told him he would always hold a special place in my heart.

    My letter had a ripple effect, which caused other family members to voice their love and appreciation before it was too late. After all, it is much easier to pretend everything will be all right. Especially when we make every attempt to distance ourselves from the reality of our own mortality.

    So here is my letter to you - given with open eyes and heart...

    Dear Michelle,
    I knew from the moment we met, you were someone I could trust. Someone who would be a champion for me if needed - and you proved this over and over. Thank you for standing up for me when I needed it most.

    I know I have said it before, but I will say it again... your stories and thoughts you have shared over these past months have brought laughter and tears to my eyes. You are brave, you are bold and you are beautifully flawed. Most importantly, you are loved.

    Your personal journey has shaped who you are and I can't imagine you any other way. I will always remember you as our own feisty, well-dressed, no-nonsense warrior princess whose generousity knew no bounds.

    When the time comes, do go gentle into that good night knowing you lived a life worth living surrounded by people who love and care for you - knowing that your words will carry meaning long after you are no longer able to write them.

    xoxo laura

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    1. Again Laura - my creative genius - you leave me breathless. To say I am touched by what you wrote is an understatement. Please know I will come back to this over and over again to remind myself that I have something so very good to hang onto. You are a gift in my life - forever and always...xo

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  4. Michelle, you sure didn't owe anyone this honesty. I'm at a loss for the ability to write the many, many thoughts that come to me about you. I fear that you might see my words as maudlin -- or insincere. I agree with Laura on all her statements of you. And we could fill pages and pages on how this little powerhouse would and could stand up to any challenge in the workplace and never back away -- so impressive. You are still so powerful. You continue to teach us Michelle. We learned from you in the workplace and we're learning now. Being true to yourself is a gift to take and to give away, I think. Sharing what is uncomfortable is okay. Just please keep us in mind always, and how we admire your strength and your integrity. We are your loyal fans. And fans of your little white Prince and Princess too. Fans of your family and fans of your friends. Fans of your wicked, wickedly wonderful words. I hope you can draw from us a little too. Whatever might help. Please let us know in any way we can give back a little and help you find some comfort. xoxo

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    1. Dear Regan - your words...each and every one - are as beautiful as you and deeply appreciated. Wish you every good thing always...with love Me xoxo

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