It’s a strange feeling to be sent home from a cancelled operation, an anti climax that’s hard to describe. As the days and hours tick down to your operation (in my case a Craniotomy to remove a brain tumour) you expend a lot of energy trying to keep yourself together and still live your life even with this big event looming over you.
Those who’ve read my previous blogs know that I drone on endlessly about the benefits of Stoicism but it absolutely has helped me to deal with the build up and more importantly the big come down of being sent home with my unwelcome friend still in my head. Stoic thinking teaches that we accept that we cannot control events, only how we react, so I have not allowed myself to get down or angry.
No matter how Stoic you try to be though, the simple fact is that it’s exhausting staying calm and positive as you burn up nervous energy suppressing the little doubting voices that constantly try to sow doubt about the potential success of the procedure and of how you might be once it is done.
I have a lot of friends in the NHS, one very experienced friend pointed out that people who go into hospital with a positive and upbeat mental attitude do much better and have better outcomes than those who don’t, so all that energy spent on positivity is worth sacrificing in my view.
So it’s back to the waiting list and until the new date, trying to get on with life. It has really hit my wife hard as she was looking forward to me starting my recovery and hopefully leaving this period in our lives behind. She is feeling that life has once again gone on pause and with good reason.
I still have faith in my surgical team but maybe not so much faith in the funding and support that the NHS gets. The NHS is not the buildings, it’s the people. They and it’s patients deserve better than they are currently getting.