On 8th March last year I was diagnosed with a tumour in my bowel. Later, it was discovered to have spread to my liver. Two operations in April and July went well, and no chemo was possible, due to the type of cancer (MSI). From July onwards I have been recovering, from the physical and mental impact.
Physically, it has been a slow recovery of energy and strength, but I am now walking 25 miles a week and playing walking football and pickleball.
Mentally, the biggest challenge is paying attention to the nagging fear, trying not to catastrophise and just living each day as it unfolds.
Every check up brings the fear to the surface; the ‘what ifs’ niggle away. At the end of last month I had the six month check up: bloods and CT scan. On 8th March this year I got the all clear! What a relief. No more check ups for 12 months.
As I look back at that year I am struck by what has changed. Having to let go of all of my work was easy at first, but the habit of work still hung around. However, I have done very little photography. Initially, this was because I was physically tired. But after a while I noticed that I had just lost interest. I felt overwhelmed by the repetitive views; unstimulated and indifferent to photographic opportunity.
I’m not sure why this happened, perhaps the challenges were just too much for my visionary creativity! However, the creative urge emerged elsewhere.
I have been developing a story idea, and now I have a completed 1st draft of a sci-fi novel. I’m currently deep into the editing process. Who knows where this will lead.
I do know that I have to make a decision about whis website next month; related licences are due for renewal, or to be cancelled. It’s a significant decision, one I’m still uncertain about. Maybe it’s time to let go of mindful photography and move on.
Before that happens, I will be posting a few photos from our recent holiday in Costa Rica. Something about the new sights revitalised my interest, temporarily. The photo that accompanies this post is from that set, and reminds me that even a sky can show you something unlike anything you have seen before. If you look very carefully, you can see Venus.