The worst day of my life
“I’m just going to have a brief look back to see how far we’ve come.”
A sentence I said to my friend James whilst on a 15km long walk last week.
I’ve had a couple of low weeks recently and with not much happening or moving forward. I’m currently unemployed and been unsuccessful with a couple of job applications, I’m waiting on Christmas before making any decisions, and I am more single than I thought I was.
All I have to do is see where I was last year and look how far I have come to know that this is not the end. I love the quote “It will all be ok in the end, if it’s not ok, it’s not the end”
I nearly died!
One day last November 2016 I was so ill I nearly died and it wasn’t even the cancer that did it. I went into hospital for a third day in a row of chemotherapy treatment and could not sit up straight in the waiting room chair through exhaustion. The nurse asked if I was ok and started to check my observations. My heart rate was beating irregularly through the roof and would not settle.
Within seconds I was put into a wheelchair and rushed upstairs in an elevator to another ward whilst being uncontrollably sick into one of those sick buckets that look like a cardboard hat. I don’t know what was happening, but they had pumped me with 14 hours of chemotherapy the days before and the anti-sickness pills were wearing off fast.
Have you ever had pins and needles in your head? It was the most nauseating feeling ever. And I was getting hotter and hotter. The nurse that was pushing me in the wheel chair was panicking and went down to level 1 of the hospital rather than taking me up to level 4. She couldn’t find the ward and then when she pushed me back into the elevator she crashed the wheelchair into the side of the wall. That made me be sick again into the sick bucket which was now at its full level.
The week previously my sister had taken a photo of me when I was really struggling. I asked why she did it and she said I can’t always just focus on the positives. She then took this photo of me while I was out for the count.
I was laying on the hospital bed with my eyes shut, plugged into an ECG machine, with blood coming out my arms where all the needle pricks had not properly gone into a vein. I did not want to move one single finger or my eyelids in case that was the thing that raised my heart rate that extra beat to finally finish me off with a cardiac arrest.
One of the biggest reality checks of how dangerous chemotherapy is, is when the nurses administer the bags of it into you. They are covered in full protective clothing including protective gloves up to their elbows and they put the bags under red bits of plastic so that you can’t see the bags of fluid. You’re sat there thinking this nurse can’t get one tiny bit of fluid on her skin because it’s so dangerous, yet she’s pumping this fluid directly into my veins.
I was laying there thinking “great I’m on my way to surviving cancer and I’m going to die of a heart attack instead.” I remember it clearly. I was speaking to God or whoever was in my head listening to my thoughts and thinking “please just give me one more chance and I’ll be good and I’ll do all the things I’m meant to do. I’m not supposed to die yet, I’ve got so much more to do. I’ll be nicer to people, I won’t drink as much, I’ll eat more vegetables, I’ll be nicer to animals. Please just let me get through this.”
Soon the drugs started working again and I woke up some hours later. It was simply terrible and no words will ever justify that feeling of thinking I was about to die. I was meant to be in hospital for one hour that day. I was discharged 3 days later.
That day taught me a lot about myself and life.
Like I said, I was feeling low the last fortnight and partly is because I am waiting for the next AFventure. I love having time off work but it gets boring, I love being back home and spending time with family, and I love England but seriously it is so colddddd!!! I can’t deal with this temperature and it being dark at 4pm.
But all these times of being alone and having time to think is a good time to reflect on what has past and what is in the future. A good time to just stop and look backwards for a minute and see how far I have come, before looking forwards again. Something has changed this week and I am more determined than ever to reach my full potential and accomplish my dreams.
Recently I walked the 15km along the Jurassic Coast from Bowleaze Cove to Durdle Door with my friend James. Walking long distances can really reflect a life’s journey sometimes. It has uphill struggles, It has downs, sometimes you lose your path, the views at the top are amazing, you cross paths with people at the right time, sometimes the sun is shining on you and sometimes when it rains it pours. You can look back from time to time, and you can focus on the end goal but ultimately you must live in the now and enjoy the journey while it’s happening and take it all in!
You can’t just look backwards because that’s not the direction you’re going. You can’t just look at the end point of your walk because you might not even be able to see it yet. Just enjoy the walk you’re currently on. Enjoy what’s around you now and take it all in because before you know it they’ll be something else around the corner to tackle or enjoy.
Walks are always so true to life analogies too. Some of my favorite ones being ‘some of the best views require the toughest journeys’ and ‘it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey’.
And that is where I am at now, just taking a pause to look back at where I started, before I continue my journey to reaching the top of my mountain. Confident in the knowledge that after every low moment I’ve ever had is when the most exciting things are just around the corner.
Live in the now!
‘You’re off to great places, Today is your day, You’re mountain is waiting, so get on your way!