The many and various ways I pass the time now has a new addition. Usually it involves drinking coffee whilst sitting at a computer keeping in touch with chums, or sipping wine sitting on our tiny terrace catching the sun, and wondering what else I can do to avoid any cleaning or tidying or putting away of stuff and things that aren't even MINE. And now I am going to type this blog. Provided that doesn't become a chore as well, in which case...

Thursday, 29 March 2012

The Final Countdown

Redundancy/Retirement Day -2

The Husband got home last night full of things to say about his day, mostly retelling as much as he could remember about the hour-long presentation he stood and watched being given by some Bloody Suit or other, all about the future of the place where he has worked for thirty-two years.  A future that more than twenty of the people in the room will not be sharing.  The husband's small department is the first to shut and others will close in the next few months. 

Staggeringly, it wasn't until a lady from HR whispered in his ear did the Bloody Suit mention the men leaving this week and thank them for their work.  The Husband said the mood was low and sullen, lots of folded arms and dropped heads, but he just stood with his arms by his side and gradually an irrepressible smile formed about his lips as he realised that none of the unfeasibly optimistic management-speak guff being spouted would have anything whatsoever to do with HIM!

I am hoping leaving work will have a similar effect on his posture that getting Our Ma safely stowed away in her Bide-a-Wee Home for the Bemused, Baffled and Bewildered did.  I could see the weight of the burden fall away from his huge and impressive shoulders when that happened, just shy of a year ago.

I expect him to become lighter of step very soon, and not just because he won't have to wear steel-capped safety shoes any more.

Today it is set to be 23C in the Northern Home Counties, and yet we are still in March.  I am just off out to increase my crop of freckles.  I have a book, a strappy dress, and some bubbles in the fridge left over from a little party we gave at the weekend.  I want for nothing except for The Husband, and as from tomorrow at about 3.00pm I get him too.  Happy Happy Days. He said to me very seriously in bed last night "We will be all right, won't we?"  I said "Are we all right now?"  He said "Yes we are."  I said, "Right then, so we will be in the future as well". 

We are very good at all right now.

Saturday, 3 March 2012

In Search of a Better Way of Putting It

Is anyone else apart for me fed up of seeing the press lazily reach for the phrase "lost his/her battle with cancer" whenever anyone in the public eye dies after cancer treatment? It's so hackneyed and - even worse - inaccurate.   Here is an excellent argument against using the phrase, from Mary Kenny, who says everything I think but far, far better than I could.

This week I was discharged from my local Breast Care Clinic, said goodbye to my lovely consultant surgeon and his nurses and trotted off into the future with a blithe step.  I am now more than five years on from my cancer treatment and still alive, and - better yet - cancer-free, so I am one of the happy statistics, with a good outcome.  But I will not pretend for a moment that I fought a battle, or embarked on some existential quest or personal crusade.  I was diagnosed, operated upon, had radiotherapy and took hormone treatment for a few years. I didn't run a military campaign!  I was lucky - others have endured much, much more, especially if they have chemo or a series of operations, but even they didn't "fight a battle" with their malignancy, in my view.  We underwent treatment, which sometimes works and sometimes doesn't.  It's more a lottery than a war.

End of, as The Young like to say.

However, I suppose the press will reach for the cliche if we cannot provide them with an equally easy but more honest alternative.  "So-and-so has died of cancer..." is my favoured one.  Anyone else got any ideas?