Dear Grief...

Dear Grief,

You are weird. You’re like the new kid in school that I so desperately want to help. I want to make you feel comfortable in your new digs and help my friends and family find out what you’re all about, but I also want to keep you at arm’s length because I just don’t understand you.

You’re confusing.

You make me laugh and smile sometimes, and at other times it feels like you are literally trying to take my heart out with your tiny little hands – while laughing, you’re always laughing.

You show up at the most inconvenient times, totally uninvited, and act as though the party is completely for you. It’s not. It’s not about you. It’s about ME! This is my life and you’re totally ruining it.

And the worst part of this whole thing is I invited you a number of times and you no-showed.

I invited you to come hang when my Dad was first diagnosed.

I invited you to come when I ended my relationship.

I invited you to come when my Dad passed.

And you kept turning me down. You were too busy washing your hair or something like that – I forget what excuse you gave me.

It wasn’t until I was starting to be ok with the fact that you had written me off that you ended up not only showing up, but bringing your whole damn family. Like, you didn’t even ask if that was ok!

You’ve definitely overstayed your welcome in the short time I’ve known you, but in some weird way I have a feeling we’ll be lifelong acquaintances.

I hope you caught that. You’re an acquaintance. I’ll never consider you a friend.

I wish I never met you. I wish I never introduced you to my friends and family. I wish you never moved to my neck of the woods.

I’m not sure who I dislike more – you or cancer – but in some weird way, you guys are similar. You too taught me something very important.

You taught me that my heart is capable of more than I ever could have imagined. That I can (and do) love greatly. That the people in my life mean more to me than I’ll ever realize until they are gone. And that I am a human with real emotions who hurts just like everyone else.

You taught me that I can’t control everything and I can’t keep you from visiting my loved ones.

If I fund the trip, do you think you and cancer can take a long drive off a short cliff? I’ll even buy the car…

Dear Cancer...

Dear Cancer,

Fuck you. 

I’d say pardon my French but at this point the last time I’m worried about is offending you.

You took him from me and that is an act I’ll ever forgive you for, or ever be OK with.

My heart hurts.

My heart hurts when I see his face in that chair, struggling to breathe. My heart hurts when I see the pain on my sisters’ faces.

My heart hurts when I see wedding photos of friends with their fathers and remind myself I’ll never have that.

You showed up at the worst time. Not that there ever really is a good time for you to arrive. You were the driving wrench in an already-weak point in my life that shattered the perfect bubble I was so comfy in.

You laughed in my face when I told everyone he was doing better. You made me look like a liar and you took him anyway.

I hate you. I mean that with my entire heart and my entire being. I hate you.

And at the same time, you taught me an incredible lesson.

You took pity on me and gave me 4 more months to make amends; to selfishly attempt to make up for lost time. It still wasn't enough time. No amount of time could have been enough though.

You taught me that life is precious and family is everything – even when they say things that leave scars on the heart.

You toughened me up a little bit. Not necessarily in a good way, but not all bad either. I did things over second half of this year that I didn't think I was capable of. I surprised myself. I did really hard things. 

I’ll never be ok with you. I’ll never like you. I’ll never thank you. And I’ll never wish you upon anyone else for as long as I shall live.

If I never hear from you again it’d be too soon.