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  • Writer's pictureTheresa R

A Little Something Personal

Friends, spending time together. A Celebrant and her friend, outdoors
Lucia and I - before the op

This is my friend Lucia. I say my friend, but I class her as family! We have been through a lot together and we often joke about writing our books, including a joint few chapters where our lives crossed.

This is Lucia. She is a brain tumour survivor. This is my version of part of her story. One day you'll be able to read her story in print. It'll be worth the wait!

Almost two years ago, Lucia received the news that she had a brain tumour. It had apparently been growing for a good few years and was at the point of bringing her life to an end. Once they'd told her there was a tumour, she had less than 2 weeks until the operation to remove the tumour or she would not make it. It was urgent. It was serious! It was life threatening!

Once I heard the news, I sobbed and sobbed. I could not lose my friend!

The next day I pulled myself together & decided to drive the 5hrs up the road to go see her. There was no way I'd miss the chance to go pep talk her / discuss potential funeral plans / laugh with my friend before the op!

And that we did! We spent 2 wonderful days together laughing and crying but mostly laughing! Yes, we made fun of the tumour and it brought up some fantastic tumour jokes. Yes, we discussed funeral plans. Yes, we discussed what would happen if she decided not to have the op. Ultimately, it was decided that the tumour would not defeat her. It would not defeat her - we hoped with all our hearts that would be the case!

It was! She made it!

The op was a fair bit longer than we expected and family and friends all rallied together from all corners of the world. Her recovery was extremely tough, with a terrible infection that wouldn't let up to all kinds of side effects and issues afterwards. It has been a long road to recovery and she is still on that road. Slowly but surely she is getting there.

I am incredibly proud of my courageous friend for keeping on during a very tough time! Having a brain tumour, going through the operation, going through recovery, experiencing pain and other symptoms no one talks about. It is a lot. It is difficult. She is doing it. She is a brain tumour survivor!

I share Lucia's story, with permission, to highlight brain tumour awareness. It is a topic close to my heart because my family experienced this with my previous father-in-law many years ago and we know exactly how things can turn out. (but that is a story for another time)

How does this relate to me being a Celebrant? Being a Celebrant is about celebrating all aspects of life, from the beginning to the end and those in-between things too. We have the utter privilege to share all those special moments with you, wherever you are on your journey. Whether they be happy, whether they be sad. And, we are also human and we experience these things ourselves...

I share Lucia's story to kick off my "A little something personal" series where I share a personal story that has affected me in my life in some way. I'd love to know your stories too, and if you'd love to guest post one week, let's chat!

Before I go, I wrote this poem for Lucia, during her recovery and I'd like to share it with you. Ultimately, words can't describe how much I adore her, Lucia really is a true warrior!

I remember the moment you told me

Feelings poured out of my eyes

As if waves crashed on the shore

I could not stop them

My body ached for you, my friend

You contained your feelings, it's going to be fine,

We joked it was tumour and look now, it is but, it's fine

My car knew its mission, lay down everything, she needs you now

5 long hours is merely 5 min when it's you

Surprise, it's me, time to talk tumour, time to talk plans if you don't make it, time to spend precious time

We talked, we laughed, you slept, you stayed up, we laughed, we talked, you slept, you threw up

She's really not ok, will she make it

Don't be strong - it's ok

No, it's only a tumour, we can do this

Tumour jokes abound, they ease the pain of those around

You joked, you slept, you threw up, you wobbled, we talked, you slept

We visited your favourite place and our hearts were full

We joked, we laughed, we cried, we talked

I love you my friend - the tumour won't take you - you're too strong

I hope, I prayed, I longed, I trusted

It's ok, you said, it's only a tumour

We joked, we talked, we laughed, you slept, I left

Not long and then the tumour was gone

Stubborn tumour

But you are a stubborn one

You warrior, you queen, you defeated that tumour, our hearts breathed again

My car awaits, it knows its next mission

Not long now till ...

We'll talk, we'll laugh, we'll cry, we'll rest,

we'll joke

You beat that damn tumour

You are the damn best!

(c)T. Ribeiro

And yes, I have been able to visit her many times since, for that I am truly, truly grateful! I love my dear friend, more than words can tell. And I am glad she's here to continue the laughs and even more chapters of our lives together!

Celebrant meeting with friends on a day out. Having coffee, sight seeing, spending time together. In Glasgow. Brain tumour survivor
Lucia, Robert and I

For more information on Brain Tumour Awareness, click here

Special thank you and appreciation to Lucia for letting me share her story.

1 Comment

Unknown member
May 12, 2023

Aaah T. Beautiful words even when it's a scary subject.

Time to spend precious time.


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