I don’t know when and how I will leave the planet but if I can choose I hope it won’t be cancer…. but life is not a wish granting factory…. Once a year I raise money for charities, this is how I chose to remember my loved ones. Remembering those who can’t be here with me anymore (only in my heart). I realise this is just one of many sad cancer stories but this is my story, the one I “watched” from the front row…
Have you ever lost anyone after losing the fight against cancer? I hope you haven’t… I have… This is something I don’t wish upon anyone. However if you have, you will understand why I am saying this. You understand how cruel it is to watch the ones you love the most suffering, changing, leaving you behind. And you get to stay behind and “deal” with it. If only it was that simple…
Within 24 months I lost my uncle, my grandma and my father. In this order. One after the other… Half of my family was gone and there was nothing I could have done about it. I found it very difficult to deal with it, not living at home helped in one way as I didn’t see the stages so frequently, but on the other hand I had to deal with something worse: guilt. For not being able to help and be there more often.
Not being able to ease the pain. My family of course did what they could and I admire my uncle’s children and my aunt to be able to stay strong when he lost the battle. Pancreas cancer, 1 year fight. I know how much he hated the fact that day-by-day he was weaker and losing some dignity. He hated the fact that he needed to be looked after. He could see the pain and sadness on their faces. My cousin was 12 when her dad left us. I promised him I would always be there for her and I should call her more often but she does know that there is nothing she couldn’t ask from me. It was very hard to find the common ground at the beginning due to the age gap but believe it or not there was one thing I could always bring up first to break the ice- One Direction! Those guys haven’t got a clue what a magic power they hold. I have downloaded all of their songs and I am sure I bought more merchandise stuff than I did when I was a teenager. So I bought her a plane ticket and she flew to London and we went to a One Direction concert. You can’t imagine how good that made me feel. And I could see my uncle looking down at me and smiling and singing with us.
I hope one day One Direction can read this and understand what their music can do. She is their biggest fan after all! And the way she handle this huge and unbearable pain was outstanding. She is a heroine 🙂
Only a couple of months after, once my grandma buried her son she found out that she had cancer too. She was way over 80 and it was very hard for her to deal with the illness on a daily basis. The last time I saw her in the hospital she was paper thin and she could hardly recognise me. Her bones were sticking out and she looked so fragile. My heart was broken. My cousin was outstanding how he helped her through, I really respect him for that.
My grandma also happened to be a great baker who made the nicest cakes ever. I am so pleased that I learnt how to replicate her famous poppy seed cakes a few years before she died. No regrets. The knowledge is not lost but I have to confess I have never made it myself since.
Never postpone such wishes (no matter how small or big) because you never know when your last chance will be. Sometimes there is no next time and you have to deal with the regret. We all have these promises to ourselves, make sure you do it. My grandma told me the cutest advice on how to keep a man. 3 things: know how to cook, be clean and tidy and always maintain nice, clean hair.
We only had a couple of months to recover before my dad announced his cancer. I could not believe it, not again… I wasn’t close to my dad but it didn’t change the fact that he was my dad and I thank him for the most precious thing I have: my life. He really started to appreciate his when it was too late. In less than a year he was gone too, his final state was quicker. He walked in the hospital and few days later I got the phone call. When my bro calls me more than once at a time I always suspect that he has bad news… I still couldn’t believe it only a month before he had wished me happy 30th birthday on the phone and he could only whisper it, cancer was in his throat. I remember when I went home a couple of months before and we went to chemotherapy together. I remember looking around at everyone in the hospital talking and sharing stories and hoping that they would not have to go through what we had been through as a family in the past year. Like I said we were not that close (my parents got divorced when I was 6 months old) but his face was so happy when he saw me. He was very proud of me and told me so many times how me and my bro were the best thing he had ever done. No regrets from him there.
This year it is going to be a muddy one…
I’m taking part in the Pretty Muddy London – Finsbury Park 5k 2016 10:00 on 24/07/2016 to raise money for Cancer Research UK and I’d really appreciate your support.Donating to my JustGiving page is easy – just follow this link and click Donate:
Next: I still have to sell this body
(Author: An, edited by my lovely friend Sarah)