RED Day 26: PTSD and me: Chemo-versary

Anniversaries do not always bring feelings of joy.

I touched on this yesterday, in the societal desire for people to be happy, however, anniversaries of bereavements, of diagnoses, of illness or accidents can cement themselves is one’s mind for a prolonged period.

The mind has an incredible ability to remember dates and link to difficult situations (traumas). In my case memory also encapsulates the environment via sensory means; the weather, sounds, smells, sights, what I did that day, what book I was reading, there are a huge range of associated factors.

It’s as though my mind has captured time in multi-sensory video and the play button is pressed by my memories and recollections (triggers).


Today is my chemo-versary, three years ago today I had my first chemo. I remember the feelings of absolute fear, the sun streaming through the windows, the smell of the shower gel I’d used that morning, the lip balm, I remember Ed Sheeran on the radio, I remember the pain of the cold cap, like ice needles in my brain, I remember which chair I was in, playing scrabble with hubby, I remember crying… so many details etched in my memory.

And all of it invading my mind because today is 26th January.

I can avoid many of the triggers but cannot escape the anniversaries.

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