Tuesday, 24 December 2013

On Christmas night

This evening I had a revelation and what better place to have it than in a church. I listened to the lesson I have heard many many times before, Luke chapter two, verse 16:  "And they came and found "Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger."

Note the comma. This is a very important comma. A comma which prevents the image of Mary and Joseph all together in the manger with baby Jesu.

But maybe that interpretation is actually the more accurate. As a mother I know that when you have just given birth to an amazing miracle of life from within you, you want to do nothing other than hold your baby, to explore the tiny hands and feet and of course to breast feed straight away.

Your baby - equally strongly -  not realising that it has become physically separated from you, wants to be snuggled warm and close to you and to hear your heart beat, just as it's heard the beat for a whole nine months' gestation.

I'd wager that swaddling baby Jesus and putting him amongst the hay on his own probably wasn't on his  agenda, and likely he was vocal in that regard. With everyone being so tired, and not being in a house but in an animal shelter, what's the betting that Mary and Joseph and baby Jesus were actually all snuggled together in the hay for warmth. - without that comma. It's a scene most parents of newborn will recognise and far more likely I reckon.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Ho, ho, ho

I can't quite believe that it's six months since my last blood test. I duly turned up earlier in the week to submit myself to the phlebotomist. Then today I did something that I've been meaning to do for a while. I saw my GP in the hope that I could gain some reassurance about the odd twinge of discomfort I have in my right hip when I turn over in bed at night. It's been around since the summer when it seemed to be just a case of camper's hip - something from which I've suffered on and off during my sixty odd years of camping activities.

During the day it causes me no trouble at all - but in bed, by morning I'm aware that there's the odd nagging ache if I get into the wrong position. Actually I knew that at some point my right hip would cause me trouble because I was told that it had glowed on one of my PET scans - though whatever it was that showed up was obviously not considered symptomatic of anything nasty at the time.

After asking me to touch my toes, which I am able to do with great ease, and examining my hip, my GP said it was probably muscular. He confirmed that all the recent blood results were now OK - which was good news. However just to be on the safe side he's going to do a couple of other blood tests for cancer markers - just in case the hip issue is something more sinister.

It's a long time since I've had that awful adrenalin rush which comes from an irrational panic of blind fear. It's not nice, but it passes quickly once common sense takes over. All other cancer survivors or sufferers who read this will I'm sure know what I'm talking about.

At the moment this has rather put a dampner on the festive season, but I'm sure by tomorrow I'll have put it to the back of my mind - that's until my appointment with the phlebotomist.  Hey ho!  - or perhaps that should be instead at this time of year - Ho, ho, ho!