Days to Remember

Time has been rushing by of late and at home things have been extraordinarily busy. Over the last few months we’ve been through the stresses of revision and final exams, reflected on my son’s three years at university which seem to have passed by in the blink of an eye, received the results and classification is his degree and started planning his next steps. We’ve reviewed job adverts, prepared him for interviews and celebrated two very good offers which take him closer to his ultimate goal – four years further study (graduate entry medicine) in order to become a doctor.

I’m so very proud of J and what he’s achieved. University is supposed to be an enjoyable experience, a time when we’re unencumbered by thoughts of death and hardship. Unfortunately his university journey was marred from start to finish by more crises and calamities than some folks experience in 50 years.

At the start of 2012 it was uncertain whether I’d be here now because the extent of my malaise was yet to be determined. Our lives turned upside down in that instant and for J, a deep pervasive depression began to take hold. Every day was difficult. Some were just plain awful. Those events, the days, weeks and months of trauma, we choose to leave behind. I know that eventually they’ll gather so much dust that they’re obscured from thought, displaced by altogether happier and healthier periods of our lives.

After so much chaos and consternation things are finally looking better. Health, for both of us, is heading in the right direction and luck (if that’s what it is) has decided to make a long overdue appearance. We have some very special days to remember, free from the shadow of cancer and depression, free from people who’ve been unsupportive (and mean) and free from physical and emotional purgatory. In the last two months there have been some very, very good days. It feels as if we’re living a different life and in many ways we are. For that I am more thankful than words will convey.

Yesterday presented a particularly good and special day to remember bringing with it a new wave of optimism and positivity to hold in our hearts. After three years of effort and J’s tremendous determination in the face of much adversity, we celebrated his degree during a wonderful ceremony at Bristol Cathedral. His formal graduation could not have been more well-deserved, it’s a day that will stay with us for the rest of our lives forever bringing an overwhelming sense of happiness, pride and achievement. To have any prospect of entering medical school J had to achieve at least an upper second class honours degree in Biomedical Science and that’s exactly what he did. Well done J 🙂

These are the days to remember. They remind us that with love, tenacity and enduring faith we can achieve much more than our circumstances appear to support.

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12 thoughts on “Days to Remember

  1. Wonderful to see Jim achieving his goals Tracy. Thank you so much for publishing the update and photos. The determination to ‘carry on regardless’ despite evrything that has been thrown your way does you great credit. I hope Jim continues to do well in his endeavours. I’m sure he will as he seems to possess the same grit and determination as his mother. Much love, good health and happiness to you all. Dad xxx

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    • Thanks Dad, we’re hoping to get the professional photos soon as the light wasn’t very good on the day. I think given all that’s happened Jim’s done really well and can be justly proud. I also think it shows we come from a long line of people who, no matter what the odds, keep pushing onwards. It must be in our blood. That said, a long period of quiet uneventfulness wouldn’t go amiss! Sending much love from us all xxx

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  2. Hi Tracy what a achievement for James well done to him how proud you must be of such a lovely lad. I know how proud you must have felt as did I when Julie graduated from UWE to then become a Staff Nurse .James deserves to go far I hope he reaches all his goals in the future and I wish him well .love Aunty Linda xxx

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    • Hello Aunty Linda, it was a really lovely event and we were all very proud. To come through everything and still get a 2:1 is a huge achievement on Jim’s part and we hope he’ll go all the way and come out as a Dr as he’s always wanted. It’s been a difficult 3 years but we got there in the end 🙂 with love to you, Xxx

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  3. dear Tracy,

    what a wonderful, joyous, and uplifting post you’ve written! firstly, I am so thrilled for your dear Son, J’s graduation and his excellent achievements! the photos are wonderful, and I can just imagine the joy and sense of triumph you all felt during the beautiful ceremony at Bristol Cathedral – the excitement at the moment finally happening, your hearts swelling with such love and pride, and maybe even some very happy tears shed as well. all the many struggles, the hard, hard work of rising above depression and other obstacles, the years and years poured into the desire to reach his goals all coming together and now allowing J to move forward with further studies to become a doctor is so inspiring. I can’t begin to imagine what it was like both for you as you endured such grueling treatment, and for J worrying and wondering about all those dreadful “what if’s”; but I am sure that the perseverance, the determination, and the hope you both worked so diligently to keep alive FOR EACH OTHER has given you such a sense of enormous gratitude, and brought you even closer than ever before. and nothing, not a single thing can ever take that away! for all the “lows” that threatened throughout his years of study, and those that you suffered because of cancer as well as on your dear Boy’s behalf – happening at the same time – I wish you both years of “high’s”, soaring and shining and singing praise and amen through the Universe, many times over.

    and I can’t help but think that J’s future as a Doctor will be rife with the extraordinary desire and capacity to treat his patients and their loved ones with genuine compassion and caring, and be the Doctor who truly practices the Art of Medicine. please tell J I send my most hearty congratulations; and to you, dear Mum, as well…

    with much love,

    Karen 00×00

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    • Dear Karen, thank you for such warm and thoughtful congratulations, comments and the strength of support and friendship you always give. You know the hardships of cancer and unexpected turns of fate, the reality of the threat of and actual loss of, those we hold most dear. Compassion streams from you like a river of healing balm and brings with it a sense of hope, love and light. I think if Drs were accredited on compassion alone then you and J would already be practicing and both your surgeries would be full to the brim – word of a good doctor always travels far. Though this is not an experience any of us would want again we have tested our mettle and found we can endure more than might be considered feasible. In days gone by that might have been considered a miracle. In our own way perhaps that’s what we all are, we simply didn’t realise until the darkness faded and light re-entered our lives. Sending much love dear friend, Xoxox

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  4. Sometimes we wonder, when we find ourselves deep in the many struggles that life visits upon us, whether it’s ever possible to catch a break. But then, from time to time, the clouds just open, the sun shines through, and hope is renewed once again. Yes, of course you know that more obstacles lie ahead but through that window of fair weather you can see, even if momentarily, that the waters ahead are navigable and that the journey has been worth it. Congratulations and best wishes from my side of the ocean.

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    • Thank you Maurice. The sun is breaking through again and though its been a long time coming, it is definitely here and shining more often than not. I feel we have achieved some major milestones in the last few months and though there is still some way to go, we are in better shape now than at the start of the year and much, much better shape than this time a year ago 🙂

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