Saltwater is the ultimate cure

21st August 2015: Sydney, Australia

Today, I once again had the feeling of my bare feet walking upon the heated gravel whilst the sun spread its warmth and glory upon my wet hair. It was a familiar walk, one completed for over twenty years, however, one aspect separating the walk from many other occasions was the pure joy experienced in knowing I had just completed my first swim in the saltwater since my operation. Honestly, on reflection, I believe the smile beaming from my face could have competed with anyone in the world.

The walk appears to have reinforced the reality of the circumstances unfolding around me, especially the progress made in six weeks. Limited restrictions were felt throughout the entirety of the swim, with a close only resulting from an intention of not wanting to push myself. In conclusion, I feel extremely fortunate to be back utilising the natural environment in the hot sun, and am filled with excitement of what awaits over the summer months.

Will Cancer always be like a fin in the ocean, and I need to wait to discover whether a shark or dolphin is in my prescence?

17th December 2014: Sydney, Australia

I seem to have developed the capacity to constantly draw meaning from the surrounding environment to my personal circumstances. The event leading to these chain of thoughts was again located within the ocean whilst surfing, and has acted as a reminder of how important it is to connect with nature, especially the ocean. The difficulty immediately coming to mind is the upcoming future decision to be made in regards to my long distance relationship. It may be argued whether a connection with the ocean is a necessity in my life, however, I must not overlook the appeal the ocean has on me, particularly how calming it can be; it’s natural beauty; the occurrences that seem to bring certain thinking to surface, and importantly the enjoyment and overall feeling of joy associated with the times spent either swimming, surfing or gazing into the horizon. In addition, my life has virtually revolved around the ocean since birth, eliciting an emptiness at the thought of this not featuring in my future life. I do acknowledge all the wonders brought to my life by my relationship, and therefore lies the very complex problem of what decision is to be made.

The circumstances today were experienced alone, a somewhat rare occasion, especially when in the summer months of Australia. To place content in the event, it should be noted that I was in a slightly elevated state of anxiety due to recent shark sightings over consecutive weekends. So, when my eyesight saw a pair of dolphins jumping through the water, thoughts of what were accompanying the dolphins initially blocked my ability to completely bask in the majestic beauty of the playfulness occurring directly in front of me. A few moments later, a fin was seen cruising approximately 50 meters from where I saw the dolphins. Instinctively, I knew it was just the dolphins, however, the thought was reinforced of whether a shark was trailing the dolphins. A break in this chain of thought resulted from a number of similar fins accompanying this lone fin, reassuring me of the fact that I was surrounded by a group of dolphins gently playing in the surrounding water.

The question thought at a later stage centred upon the significance of knowing it was dolphins. If there was no knowledge about dolphins, then it is highly likely I would have been extremely scared of the prospect of what damage a shark could inflict upon me, and whether I would have gone in the water at the same time again. Therefore, I need to ask, what if the Cancer inside of me was the fin? If so, can the feeling ever be replicated whereby I sigh at a relief of knowing I am not in any sort of danger, or alternatively, will I forever initially feel a degree of anxiety and fear in varying situations throughout my life?