I have been overwhelmed by the support I’ve received over the past few months and am incredibly grateful for it. Friends old and new have really touched me with their generosity and kindness.
The more people who know what’s happening, the more I get asked how I’m feeling. The most common thing I hear when I tell people what I’m about to do is how brave I am. These words are of course, very kind. It’s just, I don’t ever really feel brave.
For me, taking the test was brave. Especially, as from my Dad’s side of the family, I have inherited the Ostrich gene. Symptoms include putting things off and not wanting to deal with overly hard situations. Side effects vary from unopened letters from the bank, overdue visits to the dentist and to late tax returns. So for me, taking the test was huge. Besides, I’d always assumed I’d die at the age of 40 anyway, so what difference did a piece of paper make?
OK, so my life probably would have rolled out quite differently to how it is today – or somewhat like it had in my 20s. Moving from job or location every two years, drinking more than a healthy amount, exercising within an inch of my life, unable to sustain a decent relationship for any notable period of time and carrying round a massive chip on my shoulder. Yes, it doesn’t sound much fun, BUT, it was familiar, so again, for me, the test was the brave part.
So now, the best descriptor for how I feel moving into the operation, is incredibly lucky.
I’m lucky to have had the most inspirational woman for a mother, albeit for too short a time, who was honest enough to speak to me about my risk.
I’m incredibly lucky that my late uncle was selfless enough to take a test that has given me information that may dramatically prolong my life, whilst he was coming to the end of his.
I’m lucky to have a supportive father and stepmother who financially and emotionally have enabled me to get to this point, from way across the pond.
And I can’t believe my luck to be with someone who, both emotionally and physically, is supporting and enabling me to take the most life changing step of my adult life.
I’ll never forget a conversation I’d had with a neighbour not long after my mun had died. My mum had always found her a bit tactless, but with a good heart so had formed a polite, location based friendship with her. Having gone over to tell her about my mum, she said, “Trisha, don’t you worry. By the time you get to your mum’s age, there will have been all sorts of medical advances, I’m sure you won’t have to suffer the same fate.”
I wanted to smack her in the face . Of course I wouldn’t suffer the same fate, I was 21 years of age and invincible!
The funny thing is, she was right. And as a result I have the power to change my fate. So maybe I don’t have the opportunity to feel brave. I’m too busy feeling grateful for being one of the luckiest girl’s in the world.