This is another one inspired by Morgen Bailey’s brilliant writing prompts. It’s especially poignant for me as I was diagnosed with cancer in the autumn of 2016, and although my prognosis is excellent, I had to go through a spell of waiting, wondering and praying. Being confronted with the possibility of your own premature death is not an easy thing to go through, and so this was quite hard for me to write, but hopefully cathartic too.


It was September when they gave me the news. For some reason I was surprised. I felt pretty good, was active, slim, healthy, ate properly, all those things. Or so I thought. And now this…

Two weeks before my birthday and knowing there would be no more birthdays, how could I hope to enjoy this one? And my family. How could I tell them? I dreaded the thought of seeing their faces alter, the light in their eyes turn from joy to glistening tears. I felt guilty. More than anything, I felt so bad for ruining everyone’s plans—not least of all my own—just as the mortgage was finally paid off, just as Simon my hubby had retired. Oh we had such plans, and now…

Yes, we had made plans for the future. Now I don’t even know how much future I have. But whatever it is, it can’t possibly be enough.

I’ve got a new grandson. I had planned to see him grow up. In my head, he’d already taken his first steps into my outstretched arms, we’d gone to the zoo, and I’d taught him to swim or ride a bike, I’d attended his school plays, and caught him snogging on the sofa with his first girlfriend.

So much is going to happen in his life, and even yesterday, September 3rd, it had never ever occurred to me that I would not be there to see it all unfold.

They say life is a mystery. Perhaps it’s because it’s so short, so full of arrivals and departures. I’d just wanted a little bit longer.