The Courage medallion....

I purchased a hand made Courage medallion necklace from Etsy six months ago.

I purchased it for my mum but never gave it to her as the time never seemed right.

As a recent survivor of breast cancer it seemed fitting and well deserved but at the same time....not.

No-one needs an explanation for the word Courage.
Every-one knows what it means and it's hard to find a substitute word as good as it.

If you say "that person has a lot of Courage" it is because they are about to or have done something amazing and awe inspiring.

Well she did. She went through 18months of hell.

So why haven't I given her the necklace?
Because it's the wrong word.

For the first time the word Courage is not good enough, not big enough, not understanding enough, just...not enough.

To give her the Courage necklace would be like saying "well done, you made it through, your alive, every things OK now".

And that's bullshit because everything is not OK.

I'm going to visit her on the weekend and when I first see her it's like looking at a stranger.

I'm not talking about the physical differences to her body or of her hair growing back different or her eyebrows, eye lashes and finger and toe nails still only half there.
I'm not talking about the fact that she has and will never have a healthy immune system and she feels like hell three out of every seven days.

I'm talking about the fact that the person who will rush out to meet me and hug me tightly and kiss me on the cheek is a stranger.
She just happens to resemble my mother.

This women is strong, demanding and opinionated to the point of harshness sometimes.
She is a take no bullshit from anyone person and if you asked her for some words of wisdom she looks like she would say "if you lay down and give up, you deserve to be stood on."

She is passionate, determined, angry, fierce, loyal, protective and so easy to talk to that after a year I still sometimes think "what the hell is going on"

This person loves me, unconditionally.
She has no judgmental words to say about my decisions in life or my childrens. She is supportive, encouraging, happy, friendly, approachable, loving, funny and emotional.

She is a contradiction.

I'm not saying that I had a bad relationship with my mother before she got cancer because I didn't. She was my mother and she loved me and helped me get through some terrible times and I know I could not have done it without her.

Do I love this new women who is my mother? Yes, she's so very easy to love.
The big question is do I like her? Yes I do. Alot.
She's my friend.

So do you understand now?
What word can describe a person who has told death to go to hell, knowing that to survive and come back to us meant that she would have to let the person she was die, so that the strong amazon women hiding inside her could fight for her to live?

What word do you give to someone who has to live with ill health and the frustration of not being able to do what you want before your energy runs out every day and knowing that it is like that for the rest of your life.

It has to be a better word than Courage.

When I see her on the weekend I will give a gift I found for her yesterday.
It's a long necklace with a facet cut stone and a mounted silver bird charm.

She loves birds.
So do I. I get that from my mum.

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