Little Things and the Long Middle

Sailboat in a brilliant sunset

In one of those moments that I'm totally going to blame on chemo-brain, I realized that though this post was written four weeks ago it was never posted. There is a new one brewing that will come out in the next few days addressing my upcoming scan. In the meantime realize that this was written at the beginning of May after my last Doctor's appointment. My apologies for the confusion.

The results of the last CT scan took a bit of sorting. My oncologist and I had a false start on Wednesday and then only a quick call on Thursday to set my mind at ease. The doctor was able to  pull up the results on his computer but didn't have the radiologists results. While he didn't see the void any more, he wanted the report to make sure that nothing else was going on.
 
 Finally on Tuesday we connected by phone. The call started out with Dr  Johal saying "The radiologist agreed with me. There is nothing to be  concerned about." I was pretty happy. Then I heard the phrase "ground  glass" as he read the description. For those who aren't aware of the technical aspects of  covid-19 , this  is the description used to describe the look of a CT  lung scan with covid-19. I went "Oh darn," (actually it was a little stronger than that.)  Fortunately he went on to  describe it as scarring around the tumour masses. Still reducing and  disappearing. Gotta love those radiologist's words. The void that they  found before has closed up. There was a new less than 5mm tumour in  my right lower lobe that we'll need to keep an eye on.  Another scan in  eight weeks and if there is nothing then back to a four month watch  protocol. Things are looking pretty good.
 
And we are back to the long middle. This whole thing started with a bang almost two years ago now. And lots of things happened. But now we are stuck in the long middle. Project managers dread this part of a project. Not that lung cancer is a project, after all it is my life.

Recently a friend challenged  me to stay in the present. To notice the  little things. And so while there is some news about my CT scan this  time, I want to share the little things that I'm grateful for.
 
 The scent of lilacs in bloom.
 And people who call me over to share the wisteria too.
 Flicker screaming at a crow next door.
 Sunshine and warmth.
 Kale, tomato, and peas growing already.
 Oh and a sweet potato that started to sprout so got stuck in the ground.
 A cat that loves to play with the laser pointer dot.
 An ambulance wailing in the distance.
 The throaty roar of a motorcycle. Yup it's a Harley.
 The blat of a jake brake on the Mack truck coming down the hill.
 Warm sun on my back.
 Green green green grass.
 Shade on my side of the street.
 Friendly namaste from a bearded Sikh walker.
 Growl from another when I mentioned the sun. "Not an Arab."
 Magnolia blossoms gently drifting down.
 Profusion of yellow dandelions.
 The late evening air filled with dandelion parachutes.
 Snick of clippers as the gardener high on his ladder brings a young maple into shape.
 Smell of naan baking in someone's yard.
 Mouthwatering feel of curry wafting on the breeze.
 And that meal does smell burnt.
 Is that hickory smoke or is is it mesquite?
 Venus, Evening Star, as she prepares to slip out of sight for a few months.
 Glow through the blinds with a full moon in a clear sky.
 Flowers. So many flowers.
 Tiny flowers like bleeding hearts and baby's breath .
 Big showy flowers like daffodils and tulips.
 Tree flowers like apple and cherry.
 Bushes of camellia and rhododendrons.
 Strange flowers - what is that purple one like adder's tongue?
 Friends from around the world bonded by common cause.
The Londoner using zoom to travel in this time of covid-19.
Cincinnati artist relishing his awful pickle jokes.
And the Aussie with a wallaby in his yard.
 New dog friends,
The lab who drags his owner across the street to say hello.
 Or the barkie teacup ones who won't come near.
 Or the white ghost who drifts quietly up to the fence and low growls when I say hello.

Many of us are lamenting in this time of lockdown. The isolation is bringing many of us face to face with our worst selves. The Psalmist feels the lament in Psalm 89:

We’ll see death soon enough. Everyone does.
    And there’s no back door out of hell.
So where is the love you’re so famous for, Lord?
    What happened to your promise to David?
Take a good look at your servant, dear Lord;
    I’m the butt of the jokes of all nations,
The taunting jokes of your enemies, God,
    as they dog the steps of your dear anointed.

And then in the final phrase reminds us that even in all the adversity, all the difficulty that surrounds us:
Blessed be God forever and always!
Yes. Oh, yes.

We too can rise above the lament by remembering that we have an all powerful God, one who cares for us.

Thank you all for your encouraging thoughts and your heartful prayers.

Angus