Over 6 years ago I went to an information day hosted by Scotland’s Neuroendocrine Cancer Charity; The Ann Edgar Charitable Trust I went on to go to support meetings every month. There is a group of us that have became friends and a firm support to each other, which is lovely. Some days its good to be able to talk to someone that you know really understands how you feel and you never feel patronised when talking to each other and at times you really need that ‘I know how you feel’ conversation’
The first person I saw at the information day was such a lovely chap and his wife. He was smiling from ear to ear and guiding all participants that were going into the conference. Despite having never meeting the man before you couldn’t help smiling back, he had the kindest gentle smile. He would stretch out his very long arms and direct you into the room. We have became friends and seen each other at most meetings. There is a nice core number of us that try and get together and blether and spend time together. I have had help organising the tea party and we all went out to the theatre, day out on the barge, a night in my local pub, singing songs and doing magic tricks and said friend getting up and helping out with rope trick – oh boy we had so much fun. Norman was twenty years older than me and called me the youngster. I felt he looked out for me in a way when we sat together, it was his nature. When I organised the tea party, and my goodness what a lot of work went into it, he said, now young lady before we open the doors to the public you get half an hours shut eye. Sometimes he would quietly talk and other times he would stretch his long arms like a giant and bellow what he wanted his audience to hear. Norman’s first words to me were always and how are you today my dear, is life treating you kindly? He would have that big grin on his face and it would warm my heart. Although Norman was his own man, him and his wife came as a pair and they were very much together. One of those most beautiful relationships each partner knows when the other has had enough and needs to leave, when they are tired, hungry etc. They have the best tales to tell from their travels on holiday. They separate across the room and yet communicate with just a glance and before you know it they have made a decision and you are saying cheerio to both of them, see you next time.
This blasted life limiting illness at times imprisons us in our houses, makes one feel so ill you can’t do a thing, medication, hospital appointments, etc become a way of life – however, meeting each other and sharing some of the good and the bad really helps me get on with my journey.
I found out sad news last week, my pal passed away. Norman was diagnosed with neuroendocrine cancer 13 years ago. I feel privileged to have known him and spent time with him and Margaret for the last 6 years. I was diagnosed with carcinoid syndrome 10 years ago, whilst a sad occasion like this leaves on thinking about our own mortality, I count every day as a blessing and am happy with the treatment and care I’m getting from my consultants, doctors and nurses.
Today was Norman’s funeral, unfortunately with the coronavirus the world has gone a little crazy. We are on a lockdown situation and are living under certain restrictions. Funeral services are allowed to go ahead, however are restricted to immediate family. I was able to watch the service on a live podcast. I sat in the comfort of my own home in front of the open fire and watched Norman’s funeral service.
“Go my friend and enter into eternal joy and peace, dance with angels in eternal light and love”