Tuesday May 10 session no 32 (1 to go)
I have scratched my 32nd mark on the wall.
There is just one enema left in the box.
Tomorrow they will rattle the keys, the lock will click open with a sweet, sweet sound and I will walk out blinking, slightly stunned, into the daylight .
Maybe you think I’m exaggerating to make for a better read – I promise you that (for once) I really am not.
Tomorrow around 5pm when I complete by 33rd and final session, I will feel like I’m being released from prison.
Free to get on with my life, free to travel, free from daily reminders that I’m being treated for cancer.
And I suppose like all prisoners about to be released, I’m excited and a bit apprehensive.
Life inside is restrictive and repetitive, but you know what to do and where to go. You know how to play the system to keep the warders happy; you know how to score important little victories that put you momentarily in control.
Out there, beyond the Radiotherapy Quarter, in the Land of Uncertainty, things are more complicated. The simple certainties of Crossing the RT quarter will be replaced by the old confusing anxieties. When is the first test? What will it show? Has the treatment worked?
I can sense all the old demands on my time starting to build up (thank you to all of you who have been so wonderfully patient).
But you know what? Standing here on the last sandy ridge of the RT Quarter I say: “Bring it on!”
I’m hungry to get back into the fray. I want those four hours of my day back, every weekday. I want to feel the hustle and hassle of a more normal life.
Even if I’m only out on parole, I shall be a free man.