I believe our body is conscious of pains and memories before our brain tells us these flashbacks are coming. I can feel a change in my behaviour, mood and sleep when a hard memory approaches. Marco feels it in himself as well, and we can see it in Valin. We all feel a bit more heavy, quiet, and fatigued. These thoughts are always at the forefront of our minds.
The day Madox was diagnosed is fast approaching. I think about how he was showing mild symptoms we mistook for simple every day things. While skating he complained of feeling tired and didn’t want to skate anymore so we pulled him holding the hockey stick and made a little game out of that. Another sign was he couldn’t turn the door handle on the back door with his left hand (the one that he lost complete control over during his illness) but we dismissed it because that handle had always stuck and was hard to turn. I hate myself for not being more alert to these symptoms. Why I didn’t pay closer attention and piece them together. Yet none of them were all in the same day, but randomly throughout the weeks. I guess it was easy to miss.
This week was when Madox began looking at us with one eye closed and said he was “seeing two”. We immediately clapped and said he’s going to need glasses just like his mom and brother. Over the week it got worse and he would say his sight was blurry now too. I knew this can’t be just needing glasses and the word tumour was blazing in my thoughts. I kept thinking he should have nausea, headaches, something else with the blurred vision. But every time I pressed Madox, he denied it all. We took him to an optometrist hoping I was wrong, saying glasses would fix it all. The only time I did not want to be right.
So I lay in bed thinking. Thinking of the week leading up to diagnosis. Thinking we should have taken him in to emergency sooner. Thinking being diagnosed a week earlier may have changed his course of illness. Thinking nothing we could have done differently would have changed the outcome. This month is tough on us all. Diagnosis day, Madox’s birthday and all the terribleness in-between. We use to look forward to March. That was before diagnosis day happened. That was before we heard the letters DIPG.