The weather is warming up and the days are bright and sunny save for a few short spurts of rain. But it is a happy day for me and Lolo as the doctors came with the blood count chart and cited a significant rise in the numbers after yesterday. We could not stop smiling for hours as we were left to ourselves. The damned neutrophils rose to .4. But as one doctor said, hopefully it is not a blip in the system and the rise continues. We hope not as the platelets rose to 22 on its own, unassisted. It has happened for the first time in three months. No wonder Lolo was teary-eyed when he saw the figures yesterday.

And for the first time, the doctor said we can take a walk outside the room, with masks of course, for some fresh air and coffee, perhaps. But I have decided not to take that risk on this first day of jubilation. Maybe tomorrow we will take the lift down to the first floor and have coffee with all the other people around - our first exposure to normal life in so many weeks.

When I look back at the weeks gone by, every day was a nightmare, every moment spent in silent prayers. The chances of infection was so scary with the body having no immunity. I think about those people in similar situation and wonder how they cope with this fear, this enveloping fear that seems to have no opening. But there is some tiny room for a breather now. I can only say God has been kind to us.

This, says Lolo, has been a life changing experience for him. I think so too. It was like walking into the jaws of death and by some fluke coming out of it. Because the odds against us were so many. If there is one lesson I have learnt from all this, it is keeping the fire of hope alive. With reason, therefore, that Alexander Pope says, "Hope springs eternal in the human breast", meaning man will never give up hope even in the face of extreme adversity. With personal experiences,  you connect to these lines even more. Welcome Spring!

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