Enforced clarity

8 Apr

Even amongst all the shit it’s possible to have good days.  In fact, shit like Cancer focuses the mind. Never have I seen so much, and done so little (remember my post where I flirted briefly with beginner Buddhism?). Well now I’m living it.

My mother has always been a busy person. A talented and able person.  People would marvel at just what she could do, how much she could take on, and how well she would do it. To them she was a creative powerhouse. Of course to herself she’d never quite done enough. Sound familiar? Well my life was pretty much spent the same way. Running around in the pursuit of something, forever chasing my tail, with each obstacle taking on a seemingly insurmountable form.

Now of course my mum is still all of the things she was, but her illness has forced her to to slow down and take notice.  (Years of telling her it was her time, to sit back and be selfish, and it’ taken a terminal bloody illnesss to make her do it.) Cancer has stopped her in her tracks, and as shit as that is, as devastating and heart breaking, there is also something rather sweet. For the first time (ever?) she is taking a good look around her, drinking it all in, and what she is savouring is frequently surprising, and at times delicious.

Normal life has a habit of taking over, the meaningless usurping the meaningful in a cloud of impenetrable smog.  Perhaps it’s not so much that rays of light can still exist in an otherwise stormy sky, so much as it is the rain itself that makes the luminescent rainbow a possibility.

It really is a shame that it takes something so shit to enforce that kind of clarity. But rather that, than never to feel it at all.

14 Responses to “Enforced clarity”

  1. Vegemitevix April 8, 2011 at 4:27 pm #

    I love this post M2M, beautifully written and well, I just relate so much. I know that it’s horrible circumstances but how wonderful that you can find this wonderful clarity. The picture you’ve used is absolutely gorgeous too.

  2. Chris Mosler April 8, 2011 at 4:32 pm #

    Powerful stuff Milk, beautifully written. x

  3. liveotherwise April 8, 2011 at 5:42 pm #

    really powerful and, I’m going to guess to some ppl, a very surprising sentiment at the end.

  4. elleonthego April 8, 2011 at 5:55 pm #

    So sorry to hear about your mother. I’ve been away and focusing on other things, rather like you describe in your post. I’ve been there, losing my parents when I was a teenager, watching a strong woman fade away. I nearly lost my life as well and you never forget that moment when you know this could be it and all you can think of is your two babies at home.
    My mother lived for the future, she bought and kept things for best, for occasions that never materialised. In our house, everything is there to be enjoyed, because you never know if tomorrow will come.
    All the best, take care

  5. Mrs Skinner April 8, 2011 at 7:05 pm #

    These posts are such great medicine! I know you didn’t intend them to be that but they are!

  6. Michelle Twin Mum April 8, 2011 at 10:06 pm #

    Thanks for making me think, I am so glad your Mum is getting glimpses of all the beauty and joy that is around right now even in this awful time.

    Praying for you all.

    Mich x

  7. SAHMlovingit April 9, 2011 at 6:46 am #

    Beautifully written, as always, Henrietta. It is amazing how things like this can really make you appreciate more and take a good look at the world. Thinking of you x

  8. Wanderlust April 10, 2011 at 3:28 am #

    This is just so beautiful. Wow. Unfortunately, sometimes it takes something tragic for us to grow in ways we wouldn’t have otherwise. Perhaps this is your mother’s gift to you. xxx

  9. Kelloggsville April 10, 2011 at 8:35 am #

    I enjoyed reading this it made me sit and think about ‘what is this this life so full of care, we have no time to stand and stare’

  10. Livi April 10, 2011 at 7:43 pm #

    You are dealing with all this so well sweety, you really are. What a fabulous post, really moving and definitely food for thought.
    Sending love to you and you mum

  11. Paula April 11, 2011 at 1:02 am #

    Enforced clarity – I really like that phrase. It’s so true, the shittest things in life are those from which we learn the most. Sometimes it’s an obvious and immediate lesson, other times a slow burner but always it’s important.

    Much love HP xx

  12. tim April 12, 2011 at 7:49 pm #

    that. my love. is writing of the very highest order.

  13. rachel frowd April 13, 2011 at 6:44 am #

    o darling. beautiful. love it and love you


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