LETTING GO FOR ONCE
Thankfully, I had built up a quiet trust in Mr Shaw, my surgeon. He was a decade younger than me which to some may have been unnerving considering I was only forty-two and he literally was to have my life in his hands. However, his primary concern throughout the numerous consultations was to alter not only the physicality of my spine but also the misplaced perception that I had held of myself for thirty years. He really did comprehend the view that I held in my mind actually outweighed the disfigurement and pain that the Scoliosis held over me. He saw me as a whole person.
The day of the surgery loomed – Monday 23 January 2012 – my children were fourteen and ten and my step-son was just eleven – that unsettled me as this period in my life was going to effect them in many ways. Tony, my partner had been given absence of leave from his job for three months to be carer. Something that we still are truly grateful for.
I had never been one to let go and trust that a situation would work out – this time in our lives was not only about to hopefully improve my long-term health but unknowingly at that point would bring us untold lessons that would remain with us all. Everything happens for a reason, as they say.
Saying goodbye to Lou and Fynn was difficult. We had always been together apart from their time they had with their Dad – until that point I had always been available to them no matter what. I felt that I was abandoning them. Of course, that wasn’t the case but this had to happen. I cried many silent tears hoping that they would get through this, doubting that our bond would be enough. I irrationally questioned my capabilities as their Mum. It hurt so much it still brings tears to my eyes.
So, after a restless night and many a last phone call to family and friends wishing me well I was administered the pre-med to calm me. I wanted to scream and run away and get back to my babies. Scared is an understatement but to know life in a wheelchair was my destiny as the curvature increased the pressure on my lung. That was a good deterrent and a reason to stay.
The staff were amazing as I was wheeled in the bed down to theatre – Tony was by my side throughout. He really has never been a worrier but even now I could see and sense that he was. For once, I had to give in to this situation and allow these skilled and gentle souls do what they are trained to do. I felt like a lamb to the slaughter. I didn’t want to know what the operation entailed and it was the right move in hindsight – I just wanted to be okay and get home.
The theatre doors loomed in front of me and I felt myself drifting into a peaceful and relaxed sleep. It was a relief to know that after all these years someone was finally understanding and knew how to make it better and for once, there wasn’t any fight in me. It was time to let go of everything and trust.