The whirlwind which has blown through my life in the past month has taken its toll both physically as well as emotionally.
The speed of the process has been the most devastating. Little did I think when I boarded the overnight bus to Nairobi on the 2nd April I did not imagine that would be my last day in Tanzania.
My last day in school on the 31st March was just an end of term
- simple goodbyes
- enjoy the break
- see you next term.
Students wished well for revision expecting to pick up the strands of curriculum and revision in two weeks.
Work left for next term – looking forward to the rest and plenty of time to pick things up again after Easter. It had been a short intense term and as Assessment Manager – the end is always intense as I am managing the reporting process in school which means a lot of chasing up and getting deadlines met. I was tired by the end – though did not know at that time there was any other underlying cause.
We boarded the bus heading for Nairobi with the intention of exploring Kenya for the first time. Visiting Nairobi, Mombasa (Diani Beach) and Kakamega Forest. We packed for two weeks – mostly shorts and T-shirts, holiday wear.
We had plans to chill out on the beach, but also indulge in a bit of Nairobi civilisation. One thing I wanted to do was to check out my shoulder so I did book an MRI scan and follow up Consultation with an Orthopaedic consultant – so glad I did . As related elsewhere this meant a change of plans and a return to Nairobi and missing out on Kakamega Forest.
The outfall of that Easter Whirlwind has been immense. I feel that there has been no closure to my Mwanza life. No proper goodbyes, no settlement. I have been wrenched away from a lifestyle I loved (in spite of it’s own frustrations),from friends and most of all from family (Anita and Bex).
I will never see some of these folk again – certainly not the local Tanzanians and the pupils who I can’t help feeling I have left in the lurch. So close to exams and then abandoned – it has been hard, feels unprofessional, forced upon me by the speed of progress of this disease and my bodily break down. There is a violence to all of this which has to be absorbed.
I remain positive in myself that this diseases will be battled and I will recover but the likelihood of working in a classroom and travelling overseas for any length of time is almost certainly gone – so big adjustments are having to be made.
Meanwhile in the Tanzania, the family struggle on – a house to empty, things to sell and preparations to make. My daughter sitting IGCSE’s as I write – a whole new future now needed for sixth form in a new place. Three months or so until they return and only a flaky Skype / FaceTime connection between – though we try to speak daily. The robbery has been fully compensated which is a relief, but there is much to do.
Cancer is an illness and it’s effects are not just physical they are emotional too!