Tena koutou katoa. Nga mihi nui atawhai.
My current detour is finally coming to an end and I can see the smooth highway in the not too distant future. I have now completed my 5th out 6 chemo treatments and all is going much better than I expected – no nausea, no need to sleep during the day, no achey bones – none of those common adverse side effects that often go with this treatment. Yes, I am now completely bald but my hair will grow back and, in the meantime, I get to rock a range of colourful scarves and hats – a new look for every ensemble!! As the treatments have progressed, there have been fewer potholes and no dead ends. It’s been more about learning to go along for the ride and sightseeing along the way.
As I am coping so well, I continue to be able to support the Senior Leadership Team with administrative tasks from home – and that was handy in the recent Level 3 Alert. I have even been able to pop in to the College in the new year. It was a real pleasure to be able to visit all but one of the Year 7 classes, to introduce myself to these students who are new to our learning community. They all looked so bright and eager to continue to learn. They assured me they have been made to feel very welcome.
As we enter the season of Lent, one of the positive Lenten tasks that our Chaplain, Sr Anna, suggested, was expressing gratitude to someone each day of Lent – 40 days of saying thanks. 40 days wouldn’t be enough time to say thank you to everyone who has supported me so I am going to do a global thank you today.
I am so sincerely grateful to all the staff, students, parents and members of the wider Carmel community who have contacted me personally, supported me with gifts and nourished me with their food and meals and especially offering their prayers. I truly believe that it is through the power of prayer, being held in prayer by so many, that I have been able to navigate my way through my treatments and procedures so well. So much better than I could have every anticipated.
I am planning to return to my full time role in Week 4 of Term 2. I am really looking forward to seeing you all in person again. Aroha nui.
Lent: a Time for Renewing Faith, Hope and Love
‘In order to give hope to others, it is sometimes enough simply to be kind…’
— Pope Francis, Message for Lent 2021