The Elephant in the room


Just a little under 40 years ago whilst walking home with friends from school, we came across a group of boys one of them stood out to me, a tall beautiful blonde.  
We got talking and that was the start of my first love.  We had lots of firsts that boy and me, but after a few years I wanted more from life so I left him and went off on my adventures.  Many years later, 25 to be exact, our paths crossed again thanks to the internet and within a year we were married.

We have been through so much in the past 14 years.  Many great times, good times and more than our fair share of tough times but we have stuck together.  We are true soul mates.  That doesn't mean we sail through life in a loved up bubble, far from it.  But it does mean we "get" each other, we understand how a relationship works, we work as a team when it comes to our family, we share the responsibility and we talk about anything and everything (well I do mostly), we laugh, cry together, we talk about our dreams, where we will travel when the boys are grown, the countries we will visit, the places we will see.

But now there is an elephant in the room.

I can't seem to find the right words to say to my husband, to my love, my life.  We found out on Friday he has Prostate cancer. I was beyond shock as I was certain he was just suffering from the after affects of an infection he had.  I was totally unprepared to be told he actually had cancer.  my soul mate sat there showing no emotion while the tears rolled down my face.  To my horror the Nurse turned her attention to me, its not about me I whispered, ignore me, its not about me.  Its about Nigel.

The explanation of what was going to happen next, what was involved seemed to go on forever, I just wanted to get out of that room, I couldn't breath, I wanted to hold Nigel to talk to him, to tell him I loved him, to talk and talk and talk.  When we finally got out of that room I couldn't find the words, everything seemed wrong, he was silent.  "Are you ok" ? Stupid question, stupid fucking question !! and it's been like that since.  I keep trying to find the right words, but what are the right words ?  what do I say to help him ?  I can't possibly make him feel better, I can't make it go away, so it sits there, 

like an elephant in the room

and he is just going about life like nothing has happened, which is breaking my heart, is he scared, what is he feeling, does he want to talk ? can he not find the words either ?

Last night as he slept his hand searched for me in bed, the first move to reassurance ?

I'm here my love, my life, my soul mate

I'm always here.

12 comments

  1. Oh Karen I'm so sorry. Xxxx

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  2. Oh Karen what an awful shock for you both. Take things a step at a time and focus on the fact that this cancer is very treatable. Always here to talk if you need an online friend xx

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  3. Everyone's worst fear. I'm so sorry this has happened to you and your family. I have heard it said that people don't die of prostate cancer, rather they die with it - meaning it doesn't kill you usually. Not much compfort I know, sorry. Sending you lots of love. xxx

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  4. Oh Karen, I'm so sorry to hear this. And sorry that you have had this awful news just before Christmas, not that there is ever a good time. I kind of know how you're feeling as my mum was diagnosed with breast cancer a few years ago. I think sometimes it is harder for the loved ones to deal with their emotions than the person who is actually affected. I was shocked by how hard the news hit my dad and by how normal my mum seemed. I thought she would be the one to fall apart. But she stayed so strong, stronger than I ever imagined she could be. But as far as she was concerned it had happened, there was no point worrying about what ifs and she just wanted to get on with the fight. She remained immensely positive and once we got used to seeing her strength it made us stronger too. My mum beat her cancer and I'm sure the positivity played a huge roll in her recovery. And in fact the whole experience has been life changing for my parents. It reminded them how much they love each other and want to be together. They are closer now than they have ever been.
    You and your husband can beat this. It is extremely important to stay positive and fight a good fight. You have each other and together you will be strong.

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  5. Oh Karen, I'm so sorry to hear this. And sorry that you have had this awful news just before Christmas, not that there is ever a good time. I kind of know how you're feeling as my mum was diagnosed with breast cancer a few years ago. I think sometimes it is harder for the loved ones to deal with their emotions than the person who is actually affected. I was shocked by how hard the news hit my dad and by how normal my mum seemed. I thought she would be the one to fall apart. But she stayed so strong, stronger than I ever imagined she could be. But as far as she was concerned it had happened, there was no point worrying about what ifs and she just wanted to get on with the fight. She remained immensely positive and once we got used to seeing her strength it made us stronger too. My mum beat her cancer and I'm sure the positivity played a huge roll in her recovery. And in fact the whole experience has been life changing for my parents. It reminded them how much they love each other and want to be together. They are closer now than they have ever been.
    You and your husband can beat this. It is extremely important to stay positive and fight a good fight. You have each other and together you will be strong.

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  6. Karen I'm so sorry to hear this! I'm here if you need someone to chat to. Lots of love and strengthening hugs to you all. xx

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  7. Oh Karen, I'm so sorry to read this. Sending lots of love and hugs xx

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  8. Sending you hugs Karen (and Nigel) - you can beat this. Spend each day with a smile, give your best, cry out loud when you want to, trust the NHS and accept all the help you get. You can beat this disease. Love and love and love ....to you xxx

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  9. Thank you so much everybody for your kind and thoughtful comments. We have a date for his secondary scans now. Christmas Eve !! No results until after christmas which is maybe a blessing ? Not sure, if they are clear it will of course be wonderful news and we can just go ahead with the surgery to remove his prostrate after christmas. if it shows the cancer has spread, then well, we will deal with that too. Xxxx Thank you so much for your support, it means so much to us xxx

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  10. So sorry to read this Karen, hopefully it has been caught early and Nigel can get treatment to deal with it. My dad was diagnosed with prostate cancer and lived with it for nearly 15 years - but his was a late diagnosis. He passed away 5 years ago, but it wasn't because of the cancer, it was due to other health issues. Sending you lots of love and strength to you both, Jean x

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  11. Oh I'm so sorry, it's that word isn't? That word that as so much to answer for. Here's hoping that it has been caught early, your soulmate is young and fit enough to embrace the treatment. My Mum has just passed away from Pancreatic Cancer and it has left me distraught. My Dad is undergoing tests for Prostate Cancer now. Keep positive, keep strong and keep holding your soulmates hand, much love, Jane x

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  12. Oh my darling, what shitty news.
    I wish you and your soulmate all the strength and love in what will be an emotional journey, with you at his side, anything is possible, much love, Amanda x

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