Hey, I’m alive.
I felt like December lasted all but two seconds while 2017 lasted 2 minutes. I know I say this a lot, but time has just flown by. I barely have time to myself and am now just getting over a cold. Things have been so hectic lately I don’t even know where to start. My blog launch failed miserably in November because I was caught up with personal issues. I flew home for Thanksgiving and that’s when I learned that my father had been diagnosed with cancer. He is 63 years old.
There’s this scene in the movie 50/50 where the main character, Adam Lerner, (played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt) learns from his doctor that he has cancer. This is the only way I can explain to my close friends and boyfriend what it’s like. I actually didn’t tell anyone for weeks because spoken words become your reality and I was not ready to face my reality. Starting at about 1:30 in the video clip shown below, that’s how I processed this information along with my dad when he came home with his diagnosis test and told us.
I felt like I was an actress living in a movie. I did not feel like my life was real. I did not feel like anything was real. I felt like I was floating into space as I heard my dad explain that he is waiting for insurance to get back to the doctors, that he could start chemotherapy in about a week. My father did not show emotion. Although he was rather quiet during my visit home. I take after my father quite a bit, so of course, I tuned everything out for exactly two weeks. I pretended like everything was normal. When I flew back to Florida, I kept busy. I did not think of it. I did not let my mind wander. I realize now, typing this, that this was an incredibly childish coping mechanism on my part. I finally lost control in the shower, as poetic as that sounds. A song on my Spotify playlist triggered my uncontrollable tears. The song is called “The Story Never Ends.” It resonated with me because I know the ones we love stay with us forever. There will never be a true ending for me. When I get married, will he be there? Will my children know him? How long do I have with him? I don’t know how long I cried. I think I cried on and off for three days straight, alone, randomly in the car, in the shower again, in bed, at the beach on a run. I feel weak when I cry and I don’t like being vulnerable. My father didn’t raise a crybaby. He raised a soldier. And I will be the light and strength my family needs. If that means I have to hold it together until I am alone, then so be it.
When tragedy strikes, the only thing you can do is hope for a better tomorrow. If you’re on a ship, and a storm comes, what do you do? You can’t control the winds. You can only adjust your sails. Clearly, I’m starting to take a more mature approach now as it has been about a month since my dad has been diagnosed with multiple myeloma. I guess this is just me accepting the truth. Luckily, I have two best friends. My girl best friend told me that showing emotion means you’re strong and that I do not have to go through this alone. My other best friend told me he is not worried because he knows I am capable of handling anything which is strangely enough exactly what I needed to hear. It’s okay to show raw emotion, whether you’re a man or woman. Because it is human nature.