Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The 'I hate cancer' post because I can't think of a better title

There's been something really sad that's been going on around here lately. The feeling is heavy. A good friend of mine is losing her battle to breast cancer. She's my age and right on the cusp of middle age, which is still too darn young to even be dealing with a deadly cancer. I hate it. I feel awkward and uncomfortable at times because I don't know what I can do to help and I worry about the words I use. Are death and dyeing taboo words when talking to someone who is very close to death? And part of me wants to back away and protect myself... which is really silly because this is not about ME.

The latest news is that the cancer is growing quickly and it's in the lining of her lungs. It's a struggle for her to breath. She has been to the hospital several times in recent weeks to have the fluid drained and I think they may have even inserted some sort of ports. I'm not very good at remembering medical details and some of my information is secondhand so I'm not sure if it's 100% accurate. A friend told me that doctors said our friend could have 2 weeks or 2 months, it's unknown but it almost certainly points to the fact that there will be an end. Our friend is tired of fighting. She's tired of chemo and doctor appointments. She's tired of hospitalizations and just being separated from her family especially when the cancer is still growing.

I finally had a moment of quiet in the house and I picked up the phone and called her. I was surprised when she picked up the phone herself. She sounded very weak but she was there. We talked. I told her that I heard the news wasn't good. I cried. She cried. We both cried. I told her that I was just very sad that the cancer was winning and that I couldn't bear the thought of her not being around. I think that this is worse then our loss when Nolan died. Or maybe I just think that because I've had almost 4 years to deal with Nolan's death. My friend has 3 daughters that still need her. It's unfair that she is likely going to be robbed of the joy of watching them grow up. She told me that she's not scared to die but that she worries about her girls and whether her husband can handle being a single parent. Kids need their mom. It's fundamental.

I have more to say on this subject but I will have to save it for another time. I made plans to visit my friend early next week.

But yeah, I hate cancer. My friend's battle reminds me of my cousin Jared's fight with pancreatic cancer. He fought the battle valiantly and won...until the damn cancer came back and claimed his life. He was 32 when he died with 3 children and a wife. So unfair.

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