Thursday, June 09, 2011

Excuse me, can you bring me the Reality Check please?

Last month, when I read the last post of Derek Miller, the waterworks turned themselves on. That's the thing with me. My heart is an ocean, and I can never really accurately predict who will get to swim in it. And what is it about dying that really fills me up? And what is it about dying too soon, before one's time, with so much left to do, and no time to do it? What is it about being full of dreams and plans, and the will and desire to grab life by the collar and shake it up and say,"I'm here for a short while, and we've got a load of stuff to do, so let's get started, and make it count!" but sometimes not having the opportunity to do it all?

And cancer-it's so insidious. You wouldn't even know that you had it, while you're putting things off for later, for when you're older, or richer, or have more time, or when you presume you'll be happier, it's quietly eating you up inside. I can only imagine the rage, the bitterness, and the sense of betrayal, the unfairness of it all. I have known a strong, wonderful woman, who loved her family and her life fiercely, and battled this bravely. I have seen her struggle up close.The struggle to stand and face it with grace and dignity, while her hair fell out, while she lost her appetite.While she turned weak and emaciated, and her skin turned like paper, and she looked like a ghost of her former self. In the end, the cancer won. Derek Miller talks about how he had to start wearing adult diapers, and sign his own DNR (Do Not Resuscitate form) and how he actually wished he could choose which season to die in.

So when I'm feeling all 'woe-is-me' and not having a particularly good day, and I'm griping and moaning about how rough I've got it, I go back to Derek Miller's page where he writes...

A wondrous place

The world, indeed the whole universe, is a beautiful, astonishing, wondrous place. There is always more to find out. I don't look back and regret anything, and I hope my family can find a way to do the same.

What is true is that I loved them. Lauren and Marina(his daughters), as you mature and become yourselves over the years, know that I loved you and did my best to be a good father.

Airdrie (his wife), you were my best friend and my closest connection. I don't know what we'd have been like without each other, but I think the world would be a poorer place. I loved you deeply, I loved you, I loved you, I loved you.

And in my heart I know that there are people who love me deeply too. They love me, love me, love me. Then I look into the mirror and need to say to myself, "Perspective, Baby. Get some."

No comments: