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Some of you are aware that, these last few weeks, I have been going through a health-crisis that had the potential to change my life dramatically. One minute everything was plain sailing, the next minute I was plunged into a world of anxiety, where control over my future had been placed, quite literally, into the hands of other people.

I’m glad to report that I was given some good news over the weekend. Hopefully now, I can put these events behind me, even if it means that I need to face the future somewhat more tentatively than I did in the past.

I have been overwhelmed by the goodness in people who heard about what I was going through. Friends, family members, colleagues and Internet friends all conveyed their concern in different ways. Many people, I know, felt more worried than I did myself. They reacted to my news in a way that often surprised me. I could see in their faces, their tone of voice and the words they used, that it affected them on an emotional level that I haven’t quite managed to reach myself.

How did I get through it? Simple really. I didn’t get a chance to think about it. It all happened far too quickly. Over the coming days and weeks, maybe I’ll have more time on my hands to consider how this little soupçon of mortality has affected me. I’m beginning to appreciate that my time on this incredible planet, with all its fascinating fellow travellers and its sights, sounds and stories, is very brief indeed.

First the good news – I’ve just been informed that I have graduated with first class honours from my Masters degree course. Both my thesis and course work seem to have made an impression. I’m pretty delighted about it. It was a lot of hard work for me, often in more than trying circumstances, so I feel a genuine sense of achievement in having managed to get this result.

Now the bad news. My mother-in-law is unwell. Very unwell. It’s likely that she will be spending a lot of time in hospital over the coming months with a very uncertain outcome in prospect. She has been an incredibly warm, caring, supportive and strong figure within the whole extended family. She has touched the lives of so many people, I struggle to know where to begin. I really wish her the best in the time ahead.

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