Life goes on.
This is my daughter’s current mantra and how apt it is too. It is an indication of where she is both psychologically and spiritually which is much different to the “you only live once” phase we went through when Felix was first diagnosed. This was an immediate response to her realisation that life had changed at the drop of a hat. Her life had changed beyond recognition, Felix’s had too.
The YOLO phase saw disappointment and sadness whichever way she turned. I overheard her say to a friend that she knew it was bad because Mum and Dad were crying. It upset her knowing that Felix would not be able to play football because she knew how important this was to him. It upset her when we cancelled our holiday. Despite this, she found the strength from somewhere to face the situation with humour. She knew she couldn’t really do too much to help practically but she could make us smile and laugh. This became her role, she did it well and it was refreshing. It must have taken so much energy but she went out of her way to make sure that we were all as happy as we could be. Her self-deprecating humour ensured that no matter what, we laughed and perfected our banter. At times, her true feelings were exposed through her humour. She did find it hard that Felix was getting all of the attention and his blog was doing so well but by joking about it she brought it to the forefront without issue; we could then understand where she was at. The YOLO phase was a period of unease for her; she did not know what the future looked like.
At the tender age of 11, she has coped with our #newnormal remarkably well. She has endured huge changes in both her personal and social life with the maturity and sense of humour that even some adults would find it hard to muster. The YOLO phase has been replaced by a more philosophical phase. Life goes on means an acceptance by her that this is our lot for a while. This deeper and more meaningful understanding of where we are at is a huge credit to her. She hasn’t dismissed our situation or ignored it but considered and contemplated it. This maturity in outlook and thinking means that there isn’t a fuss when she realises things might not work out how they used to. This year we might be in hospital for her birthday. Of course, she is disappointed but now understands that this is our #newnormal; there is nothing we can do but make the best of it we can. It is now second nature for her to check her friend’s health before they come round or decline invitations because of unexpected changes in plans. Whilst she finds it hard that we can’t go on holiday she looks forward to the time when we can go away again. Life goes on…
Our beautiful girl who is Miss Brown, has had more to contend with over the last few months than any 11 year old should. I so wish she hadn’t been exposed to life with cancer at such a young age but she has, and throughout it all, she has stayed up-beat and a critical factor in Felix’s recovery and our well-being. We are so proud to see her friendships grow and blossom as she settles in to her new school. Her progress and attitude to learning at school continues to be of great importance to her and at no point has there been any doubt from her that this would be affected. She continues to mature into a kind, funny and caring young lady who is taking all of this in her stride with great composure and dignity. We couldn’t be more proud of her, I just only hope she sees how remarkable and special she is.