For most of my life I have enjoyed what used to be called “rude good health”. That is to say, “rude” as in “vigorous or hearty”.
Then health concerns led me to consult my GP. She was delighted to see me, having wondered what I looked like. She referred me to other specialists who told me where and when to attend.

At the county hospital they bade me dress in a unisex gown whilst hugely expensive machinery produced images of bits of me that have never before been revealed to human eyes. Samples were taken for analysis, and during this entire process I felt entirely at the mercy of others. Being commanded to “wait here” and ” lay there”, “hold your breath” and “don’t move” from people clearly used to being obeyed, I felt like a leaf in a stream being wafted along with no control over direction, speed or ultimate destination.

This entire experience has challenged any notion I may have clung to that I was in any sense in command of my life.

Then I learnt that the troublesome lumps are lymph glands and that I have Lymphoma. The good news is that this is the only thing wrong that they can find. I am otherwise in pretty good shape for my age, and have a strong faith to sustain me. Since being diagnosed I have reconsidered my role as Christian in the local community, and how I choose to share my belief in our saviour Jesus Christ. Perhaps my role today is to be frank about what ails me, and how daily prayer brings me a sense of calm and fortitude. The quality of our lives should not be governed by what happens to us, but by what we choose to do with what happens to us.

Paul Grant – June 2014