I had to go out to the Macmillan Centre for the blood test––haven’t been out since the last blood test. It was painless. No, I mean really. The Macmillan phlebotomists are artistes.
But the oncology appointment took place over the phone again, like last time. And like last time, it was good news. I ain’t complaining. Next appointment will be sometime in December.
As a rule, I don’t spend much energy thinking about that time when the cancer decides to assert itself. The drugs work, I can stand the side effects, and all I have to do is get through today; tomorrow happens tomorrow. But what worries me more than cancer is Covid-19.
The pandemic puts a new wrinkle on things. If I need treatment, I can’t have Chris with me. He can’t be there if I need chemo, or if I’m hospitalised. Illness of any kind was never easy. But compared to what it’s like now…
It’s not something I want to dwell on. I’d rather look forward to a vaccine putting an end to the quarantine. I’d rather dance around and add green bananas to our grocery order. But having to self-isolate and maintain social distancing, taking a car into central London knowing that the driver wiped it down thoroughly with disinfectant before we got in and will do the same after we get out, seeing arrows on the sidewalk directing pedestrian traffic, wondering why the hell some people are walking around with masks pulled down, wishing my own damned mask didn’t keep riding up over my lower eyelids––these things and much more are neverending reminders that not only do we have problems, our problems have problems.
Funny how things are never so complicated that they can’t throw us a total curve from an unexpected angle. I’m old enough to remember: nobody saw AIDS coming, either.
But never mind. Some things in our lives are in our control, some things aren’t. The one thing that is always in our control is how we respond. Which is why it’s crucial to find whatever’s good in the present moment, and to thoroughly appreciate it.
With a mask on, of course.