Surrounded by books like You are What You Eat to What to Eat Before, During and After Cancer Treatment, it hits me that Cancer has given me a life I thought impossible. Scattered on the bed are various notes and business cards from the dozens we have consulted in the medical field but still we do not and cannot know enough. We are still ignorant as to what is about to come, and in some ways you could say in denial. Shoved aside to the side are the many Christmas presents we bought for our families and friends, but they lay ignored and unwrapped in another room, waiting perhaps for one of my relatives to take pity and finally put then in beautiful wrapping paper. It would appear from all of this that emptiness resides in our lives, but you would be dead wrong.
Along with the horrible, Cancer also gave me the improbable: a wonderful wife. I hadn’t dared to dream that the beautiful person who affected my life and soul would now be my life partner. Strange, how the proliferation of some body cells can melt away 4 years of “hell no’s” and resistance to the idea of us getting married. Funny, how I can be accepted into a household where my name couldn’t even be mentioned, and break bread. You would think I would be filled with resentment or, worse, anger, but neither has a place in my heart. I will not and cannot allow the past to corrupt my present and future. As if by magic, I have allowed the cancer of peace and acceptance to fill our families rather than use it to destroy what’s left. There is only room for love and forgiveness. In a matter of days, we are going to be tied to each other for life, officially that is. I had accepted her in my life a long time ago, something I wish I had told her a while ago. I cannot bear the thought that she thinks it’s because of Cancer but only because it’s is true on the surface. But she needs to know what I mean: Cancer gave me the courage to talk to her family. I finally did what I have not been able to put my foot down and rightfully claim what’s mine.
There are some who would not see this as any victory, and some may even opine that now that’s sick her family agreed just to save face. I would counter that even if that’s true, the victory is still mine. I have her, and in the end that’s all that matters. They say people come into your life for a reason or a season perhaps even to teach a lesson. Preeti is all of the above, she makes the person I want to be, the person I see myself to be. I know the road ahead is potted with long hours, and perhaps fights and definite exhaustion but Cancer needs to know it has fucked with the wrong people. It obviously doesn’t know her anger or my strength. Together, we are unbeatable. You have been warned, Cancer.
- Grief and the Cancer Caregiver (everydayhealth.com)