I wasn’t going to post again┬átoday but then I found this letter, written by my mother, years ago now, before she was even diagnosed. I┬átyped it up a while ago with another purpose in mind. I have absolutely no idea what she’d say about this new situation and while the below was written about homesickness, I find it rather apt and incredibly comforting.

Nearly Thursday


This is the only paper around so this will be a RED LETTER DAY for you (even if you are feeling rather blue). Actually, since, with any luck you will receive this on Saturday it will be rather special because Daddy will be coming down. It may not be in the car though because the poor old thing is rather sad and has to be hospitalised … It could be a lengthy operation. Oh dear.

It’s 3am and I’m writing this in the kitchen. I went into your room but it was too sad to sit in there. I woke an hour ago thinking and wondering about you, hoping you have managed a nights sleep yourself. Daddy said you called at 10ish – unhappy again and had found the disco rather loud so had come back early. I hope you managed to get thru to E and that speaking to him may have settled you down a bit.

The telephone at your ‘house’ was busy when I tried, so I left a goodnight note on your pager (a somewhat embarrassed young man was taking the message so I couldn’t be too soppy!) M also left a message when we arrived home, so you know we’ll always be thinking of you – as much (or more) than you think of us. Really, truly.

P, darling, I know your thoughts and feelings are awfully muddled just now – mine are too – of course I don’t want you to be unhappy and would much rather you had been looking forward to starting as you thought you would when you first saw the brochure.


I hope and (actually pray) that you will begin to see a light at the end of what must seem at the moment like a very dark tunnel, and that you can hang on to all sorts of little positive catch phrases like – imagine it’s this time next year, how far away all this will seem and try to help someone else – it’ll help you too and keep active mentally and physically – retreating from life makes it harder and people out there need you – need your sunshine to warm them and your smile to comfort them and your hugs to keep them going. You are blessed with so many gifts of love and tenderness, the world is a better place with you in it. You have so much to give.

(PG here, obviously she’s my mum so thinks I’m pretty great. Apologies for own horn tooting)


Everything that ever works best for people is what they’ve actually turned it into. It’s the creative part of living – not the pieces that are handed to you, you just smile and say “thank you” for those (and hold them dear) they are the passive gifts; the active ones are the ones you are about to receive by your own making – little things, like spending the first night, that’s an achievement. Coming back with M and me or even having us stay the night would have given you nothing to be proud of. Now you’ve done it! You never thought you would and you did! Just keep quietly patting yourself on the back for things like that a and you’ll realise bit by bit what I’m talking about.


We do miss you already and love you to bits.

Hugs and oo’s and kisses Mum