One year ago today I woke up like any other day. I got up, had breakfast with my family and got ready to leave the house. Nothing at all about that morning was unusual or would give any indication that in a few hours an odd sensation would suddenly come over me and that would be the split-second my life was going to change forever in ways that were inconceivable at the time.
I started the day as a mid-30s, sociable, young mother working on a big exciting project that I loved whilst having a lot of the same worries and stresses as other people my age. In one swift moment that transformed to dedicating every day of my life to trying to stay alive and dealing with the sacrifices that entails.
It’s a lot for a single instant and a lot for a year later to reflect on.
Of course I mourn when I look back to my life before. The freedom I had then now feels limitless. My social life endless, hilarious and extravagant. I remember it in the same way that I remember my childhood. A nostalgia of knowing it can never really be the same again.
My life can and will slowly claw back some of the liberties I had but there will be forever lurking underneath a sense of fear, a risk-assessment of every decision I make, a heaviness that is never far away.
Today the contrast is amplified especially as I’m sitting waiting for my next round of chemotherapy. But along with these reflections are also flash backs to the days that followed where the world became more beautiful, more colourful, more vibrant and with a focus of extreme definition to everything and everyone I laid my eyes upon.
It is the anniversary of the day I became more grateful and appreciative then I had ever been in my entire life. Of the world, of all the little things that gave me joy, of life in general but most of all of my daughter, husband, family, friends and strangers that surrounded and supported me in unimaginable ways.
It was the day I realised how lucky I am.