You Can’t Steal Me, Cancer

One closet down. Shoes, clothes, momentos donated to Goodwill. Leftovers tossed. Previous career products passed onto others. Tears released. Sobs wrenched. Bitter laughs ensued.

Cleaning out a closet is cleaning out your soul-for a widow. Every box that is opened, every bag that is sorted, it all leads down a path to the life you once had. You discover things you meant to give to your in laws, letters that you haven’t read since they were first written, an abundance of thoughts and reflections on a previous life. A life that you thought you would look back over with your child in your lap, laughing over Daddy’s cute love letters (some not appropriate for child’s eyes, ha!), tearing up over the memorial of his father in the wedding program, sitting down at your 10th wedding anniversary reading over the guest book marriage advice slips that everyone had written at your wedding.

I read his words, telling me he would protect me, he would love me forever. I read over words talking of our unborn children and how he wanted me to be their mother. How he was so happy to finally have me as his wife. Words that came from an untamed heart and soul, all for me. Words I have not read since he wrote them. I have not seen his writing…since his death. Since that last signature on his living will, when he barely had the strength to write.

How do those words just wash away into a past life? How can they not become true once said, once made with a promise that was not broken, but stolen away?

Cancer. I don’t even want to type the swear word that crosses my brain because the anger in my head goes far beyond that word. Cancer. You took everything. You continue to take. I see you stealing the joy of a mother, the spirit of a wife, the vivaciousness of a lover, the protection of a father, the beauty of a soul.

You are not going to continue to steal from me, cancer. You will not. You can take my husband, you can take pieces of my parents, of my grandmother, of my friends. You already have. But you cannot steal me-you cannot steal our hope. You cannot. I will not let you do that again. Cancer…..cancer.

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