Monday, 18 March 2013

Progress - of sorts

Been a strange weekend. Friday was difficult - it's a time of year that is always difficult for me, as it's the anniversary of my Mum's death. The memory of my Mum's last few hours is overlaid with a soundtrack, which is not unusual I guess... except in this case the soundtrack is Comic Relief, which was quietly happening on the unattended TV in Mum's flat six years ago. Surreal. Nope, Red Nose Day doesn't bring joy and laughter in my house - I don't need the pictures of disadvantaged kiddies to depress me, thanks. It was particularly painful this year because RND seems to have been Red Nose Couple-of-months... how did it go on for so long? I am sure it used to be just one day, but the exhortations to "Do something Funny for Money" seem to have been there since just after I took the Christmas cards down. Anyway, it's all over at last... for now. Saturday was the actual anniversary, which I survived, as I usually do, by being very busy, avoiding Facebook (which is full of painful reminders at the best of times), and by being very sure that I am very distracted at the relevant hour - this year I managed to be having an amusing conversation with a sweet lass who works in the local supermarket. She'll never know the difference that her cheerful smiling face made  - by the time I was in the car and saw the clock, the moment was over and I could move on.

Today was a bit of a milestone in its own way... I finally got rid of the sharps bin that's been on the shelf in the hall for the last two-and-a-bit years. All the way through the chemo I had to stick myself with various drugs - one to boost my immune system, and another to stop blood clots forming around the line in my arm; these came in tidy pre-filled syringes, so I had a nice yellow bucket in which to dump them. This was supposed to be collected by the local council's cleansing team. Except I forgot to put it out on the doorstep, it never made it past the shelf in the porch. So I rang them back and apologised, and then forgot to put it out again... at which point something got stacked on top of it, then something else... Eventually, a couple of years later I decided it was time to spring clean, and there it was in the corner, all bright and yellow. I called the council again, and made another appointment for it to be collected... I even managed to remember to put it outside the previous evening. The trouble was, of course, that it started snowing, and the cleansing team had a real struggle to get anything done all week. The bin sat on my doorstep like an embarrassing...I'm not sure what really. But embarrassing. Anyway, at about 11 this morning the doorbell rang, and a smiley man in a yellow waistcoat waved a new sharps bin at me and said "Did you want a new one then?" I smiled back and said "Er... Nah, thanks". He smiled, got in his van and drove off, taking with him another marker of the difficult days.
Little things, teeny markers - but important, somehow.

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