This is the day


This is the day we go the hospital as usual. We have banter with Jörn and Nadine while they inject me. Jörn’s swearing makes us all laugh. For a moment we forget why we are there.

This is the day Jörn says I am sailing through. He ‘accidentally’ orders me more antibiotics and calls me an unrepeatable name.

This is the day.

Instead of going home we are shown into an office, the desk flanked by people. Jörn is there, but there are no jokes, and no swearing.

This day.

When they say ‘I’m most terribly sorry, but…’ and everything goes blurry, as in a film (you thought it might).

We are shown into another room, with candles and a sofa. Where we cuddle in quiet for a few moments before Jörn plonks himself down next to us, suddenly filling the room.

He never takes his eyes from us once.

This room. This day. Now.

Where we learn the names of new drugs, new procedures (we had always wondered what was behind this door), and how often. And my chances.

And Jörn saying ‘If you’re dealt a shit pack of cards, you still have to play with them.’ And that he has relapsed too.

Like yesterday.

And that he’ll be going away (he recommends Vodka and speed metal) for a while.


Then silence. Then see you tomorrow (more tests).

The day you tell your children. For not pretending.

Yesterday, today, tomorrow. Like any other (April) day. But. No.

This day.




  1. i want to say: I have read this, heard this, feel this, but in the big space of not knowing who you are the arrow floats over the ‘like’ button. How can I ‘like’ this post? I can’t. So I leave this note from this anonymous feeling heart.


    1. Thank you.
      You don’t have to ‘like’ it, or even like it.
      It happened and there it is. The full account is in my book (if you are interested) -and the outcome is good, hence me talking to you now.
      As ever with good wishes


  2. Your posts always make feel.
    Today I’ve slept badly, woken late and am crying reading your words….but thank you, I am very grateful.
    Today is the day before my husband receives his stem cell transplant.


  3. Hi Ant,

    Rachael here – just been talking to the Lord and asking for some good news as I scroll down the in box – I am so gutted that I simply don’t know what to say.

    Could you send round a very specific and gory info email so that we don’t all ask the same questions and frustrate you with our ignorance.

    I would like to turn my grief into prayer for you all – and being informed and specific helps. Right now, am thinking a whole load of perfect love to be dumped in your laps – to annihilate any fears…

    Much love, Rxx


    1. Hi Rachael. I’m so sorry to have freaked you out. This is not live, it is an anniversary of the Bad News Phase. It is in the past which is also the present. My dear Dr Jorn is no longer with us, as you can see in other posts. Apologies again, and thank you so much for responding Ant xx


  4. I’ve clicked ‘like.’

    This is electrifying writing, Anthony. I’m not a Christian but the Sunday School song ‘This is the day that the Lord has made’ rang through this post (for me). Thank you for reminding me to carpe my diem.


    1. Thank you so much John. High praise.
      Interestingly, that same song went through my mind as I typed the first words of the piece, which were the only ones I had when I began writing.
      Whether you’ve just been given bad news or are seven and a half years into remission it is still a good lesson to learn.
      As ever with best wishes


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