Not posted in a while, as the last few months have been exceptionally difficult.

My lovely mum has had not one but two major falls, the first one resulting in a fractured skull and bleeding on the brain, the second one onto exactly the same place on the back of her head, under highly stressful conditions, one month later. She is now being cared for in a cottage hospital, and it is heartbreaking to watch her deterioration.

It would be so easy to demand of God “Why?” Why should such a Warrior Daughter of the King suffer in such a way? Her heart has been sold out for evangelism since she became a Christian at the age of just 16. She is now 83.I would have loved for her to continue her life with clarity, rather than the cruel confusion of dementia. But God has been gracious, and gives strength for each day to face how to handle the professionals and their opinions about what is going to be best for her.

So just when I thought that life was beginning to settle a tiny-weeny bit, and we are trying so hard to adjust to the family’s needs, I then get the body blow that I have Endometrial Cancer, a Stage 1A womb cancer, which means it has been caught very early indeed. The prognosis is good, and surgery alone should settle the matter very straightforwardly.

In just 2 weeks time.

The problem with this particular Handling Of Life is that it is so hard to process my emotions. Because it is such an early diagnosis, and I actually feel quite well, I find it hard to believe it is actually cancer at all.

Others – “Oh, but you look so well”.

Me –  “Yup – I feel fine”.

But the reality is that this dare not be ignored. I have to listen to what is happening, and act on what I hear. It is OK for me to occasionally get very wobbly – I am after all, human. I wake early, with the immediate thought “I have cancer” running full pelt across my consciousness. The reaction of friends is mixed. Most often, disclosure has opened the floodgates for someone else to give me a blow-by-gory-blow account of one/two/three or more of their “closest friends” who are currently experiencing very difficult journeys with cancer – sometimes in its terminal stage.

This does not help.

It is easy to say that you should surround yourself with positivity at such a time, but not all life happens this way.

Sometimes I want to scream at such people, “Shut up! This is finally my turn to talk”. Sounds so very selfish, but it is honest. Having spent much of my adult life listening carefully to others, I now have to be a bit boundaried with what I do, and say, or choose not to say. And I have to listen well.

This experience has given me great insight into the deep healing power of listening. Of saying as little as possible so that someone else can flood you with their stuff, and then come up for air. Of giving people a totally safe place to simply be, without prejudice or condemnation. I pray that professionally I was able to do that with each of the clients I counselled.

Now, the boot is on the other foot.

I suspect God has much to teach me through this, and I have to emotionally slow down enough to let Him. I will have to slow down for quite a bit physically, but I need to learn to breathe at His pace, rather than my frenetic one, for as long as He wants me to.


Lozenge Moment…

  • How hard is it to stop overthinking?
  • How far ahead do you try to plan God’s agenda?
  • What happens if you lay aside time to be with God, and listen to Him, and His gift to you is Silence?


One thought on “Listening Well

  1. Not quite convinced that despite all my practice I allow folk to feel listened to! Here for you anytime to have another go at it….
    Thankyou for sharing x

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