As tears go by

Posted September 22nd, 2009 by Jane

Last week I found myself humming Marianne Faithful’s As Tears Go. And then my tears flowed.

I’d had some good days, in the hospice, cheery visits from friends made me feel I was ‘coping’ OK, doing the right ‘brave’ stuff’. But then it changed and all I had were everlasting rivers of tears. Methodome, the latest drug of hope seemed if anything to be making the burning pain in my arm much worse, and certainly not better. And so I stated to cry: huge gasping intakes of breath; big wet tears rolling and rolling down my face. And this was when the doctor was there! I sat on the bed howling into damp tissues while the medicsa sat uncomfortably on the chairs opposite me, at a loss for words, their introductory counselling skills courses being insufficient for this.

Through the hazy fog of damp air I wondered if other grown up women cry like this in front of their doctors. Or do they somehow try to maintain and manage a stable and calm front? Please let me know.

I cried for the awful endless pain and for all the losses it brought with it: loss of movement; of train journeys; of lingering dinners in crowded restaurants; of walking freely through cities and countryside; of wandering through galleries and coffee bars, Little losses, but each signifying an end, a ‘never again’ kind of feeling.

Tears were my only strategy for confronting loss. What other planned template can there be?