Random thoughts about fate, uncertainty, mesothelioma and the Coronation

So in the UK we have been celebrating the Coronation of our new King, Charles III. This was an amazingly historical event, with the usual pageantry and pomp that we like to show in the UK. It also meant an extra day off work (for some people the most important thing!).

While watching some of the day (not all as I had to take my son to his football match, and collect my wife from the airport), I got to thinking about it. First off this was a ceremony that has origins going back a thousand years, longer than some countries (hello the United States of America), using crowns and thrones of a similar age. The thought that I believe approx 40 monarchs in the UK have gone through that ceremony was mind blowing. Additionally the amount of people to have witnessed it over that time, and the reasons behind some of the strange looking aspects are also quite impressive.

I thought it was interesting how many different countries have also had similar ceremonies in the past, all developed along similar lines, but without discussing it. I find it fascinating how cultures develop similar ideas independently of each other. I am currently reading Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari which mentions many of these topics in giving a brief history of human kind. The story of the progression of humans is quite something.

It is strange how by purely a twist of fate, we live in a country that has this history behind it. I could have been born in a country looking on in wonder, wishing we had our own Royal Family. And that twist of fate also applies to many other things. It is seemingly random where we are born, and the lives we lead. And is that fate the same when it comes to getting cancer?

Is it chance that some people get ill, while others can be exposed to the same thing and not be? Of course not, there is some scientific reason behind why one person will get mesothelioma, and another wont. There can be many years before the disease can appear following exposure. (the article linked here has some useful facts and information https://www.lanierlawfirm.com/mesothelioma/). The amount of cases diagnosed each year is relatively low, but the disease is extremely aggressive.

And so by that long forgotten twist of fate, I and my family are sat at home with a seriously sick patient, struggling to relieve pain and hurt along with mental anguish. Butterfly beating its wings and all that.

My wife had seriously bad food poisoning last week, and was very ill for a couple of days. We sometimes wonder if she gets these minor illnesses worse because of her disease, and I suspect she does. Her body is already weak from trying to fight cancerous cells, and I imagine doesnt have much strength left to recover from food poisoning. Again I was really worried, as I was a few weeks ago when she called to say she had similar stomach cramps and sickness. When the specialist says that things may change quickly, you take their word as real.

She was staying with family for the week, which had been a great break for all of us. She was relaxing, we were relaxing. But the worry came flooding back when she called to tell me. And it has come back now as she is home. Even my son is feeling sick now she is back. When it was just the three of us, myself and the children, we seemed much more relaxed and happy. The stress and worry had gone temporarily. I feel guilty about that.

Our fate as a family is unfortunately partly known. I am sure we will lose my wife this year. However, the rest of our story is unwritten. How we cope and move through these months will define how we are going forward. It feels rather morbid to thing that way, but my mind has to be planning for a time without the love of my life, and the mother of my children, while trying to enjoy and cherish the present. A tricky balancing act.


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