A Stitch in Time: 18 weeks
In week 18, Jane starts to feel both realistic and philosophical and looks to another cancer survivor for strength.
At 18 weeks pregnant, I have now done 4 weeks on bed rest, and I have 4 weeks until my next scan. It is 6 weeks until D-day, ie. week 24 when I get to see my consultant to find out what happens next. I am a numbers person and often count the days gone and the days left to go, comparing the two to try and help with my perspective on this purgatory.
When I think about what I was doing 6 weeks ago, it was before my operation, and I was running around as usual trying to fit everything into my life. It seems like a lifetime ago, so, sadly, time is not going so quickly at the moment, but it is going and that’s the main thing.
I have good days and bad days, although sometimes it’s more like good hours and bad hours. On Saturday I was low, I had it in my head that things were just too fragile and was convinced I wasn’t going to carry this baby even to the 24 week mark. I got myself wound up about not only going through the heartbreak of losing this baby, but starting all over again from day zero. My husband was telling me that I can’t think like that, but I have always been a realist, and, as it is a possibility, I feel I need to be aware of it. It is one way that I cope with things. The reason I was feeling like this was actually due to some tummy pains that were making me worry. They were probably just a sluggish digestion, but in this situation you worry about everything.
On the other hand, yesterday, was a really good day. I thought I could feel some flutterings in my tummy (is there really something in there or is it my imagination?). I felt good, energised, happy. I did Christmas shopping, skyped my brother, my mother-in-law came over to look after me/help with the house, I planned Christmas, and started to plan some work things (I’ve been given the green light to do two hours a day working from home -yippee!).
It’s still a big challenge, and I am trying to take each day and hour as it comes, but counting down the time still helps. Hopefully the bad days/hours will become less and the good days more. I am concentrating on what I have to look forward to: the girls coming round on Thursday night, seeing my gorgeous niece this weekend, more online Christmas shopping, doing some work and feeling useful again. And as we head closer to D-day and Christmas there are even more positives to think about.
My all-time hero is Mr. Lance Armstrong, cancer survivor against the odds, and 7 times winner of the Tour De France. He is a huge inspiration to me and has been for many years. Here are a few quotes of his that I use often, but as I remind myself of them, I realise once again how relevant they are to my life right now:
“Pain is temporary, quitting lasts forever.”
“When you think about it, what other choice is there but to hope? We have two options, medically and emotionally, give up or fight like hell.”
“Anything is possible. You can have a 90 percent chance, a 50 per cent chance or a 1 per cent chance, but you have to believe and you have to fight.”
And finally, the one I wear on the yellow band around my wrist: “LIVESTRONG”. All I can say is “I’m trying Lance. I’m trying…”