Fuck Cancer


#182

Right now it’s the little things that get to me. Last week Mae had her pre-K graduation. She ran off the stage to hug a teacher for comfort after every song. I had never felt so helpless. Finn’s last day of Kindergarten was Wednesday. He wanted me to take him to school on the last day instead of him riding the bus. I held it together on the way there. Immediately afterwards I was weeping. It felt like just yesterday that Kate and I gently cried as we dropped him off.

Last week my nephew took Dax and Finn fishing. To make life easier, my nephew took my Kate’s van instead of switching out car seats. Leo and I are outside as they pull back into the driveway. Leo screams “Mommy’s home! Mommy’s home! Mommy’s home!” I of course lost it.

Dax made it on a very elite hockey team. You could tell his happiness was dampered by not having his biggest supporter there to share the news with. He texted his mom instead. Kate loved watching her kids play hockey. Sadly, she wasn’t up for much of that since she started chemo.

I’ve taken to doing that also. I know it’s silly, but my first inclination was to always text Kate when the kids did something amazing or if they had a great day with a friend. Again, I know it seems silly…but it is also a release. It’s a habit that doesn’t have to go away any time soon.

Yesterday I was looking for a document in our file cabinet. I found the first birthday card Kate sent me after we got married. She ended it with “I can’t wait to grow old with you. Love, Kate”

It’s these little things that just stop me in my tracks. They feel like literal punches.

I have a reoccurring dream where the two of us are just sitting there chatting about how we just know we are going to “beat this damn thing.” It usually ends with Kate asking me if I want another drink.

I think not beating cancer, and how the end came so suddenly, are some of my biggest hangups right now. I hate how it looks to the kids. If you make countless sacrifices, you put in the hard work, you take the meds that zap you of your energy, this shouldn’t be the outcome. And if it is the outcome, it shouldn’t come so quickly. I’m not saying the kids feel this way, but I could see how they could think “what’s the point in trying your hardest? It doesn’t matter anyway.”

There’s no making peace with this. Not the way it happened and definitely not to someone who enriched and helped save so many lives (mine included). I’m angry and I’m hurt.

We “decorate” the area by Kate’s urn every day. On Finn’s last day of school, he put his perfect report card next to it. When Mae graduated from pre-K, she put her hat and diploma on it. Leo colors things specifically for it and will put one of his stuffed animals up there. An anniversary card that I didn’t get to give her is next to it as well. While I love that the kids are doing this, it’s a huge reminder of not only who we lost, but what I have ahead of me.

Love you all.


#183

Love you, Nick.

I feel for you, friend.


#184

Truly heartbreaking.
Just keep doing what you’re doing. :heart:


#185

Lots of love for you too, Nick.


#186

hugs to you


#187

I’ve been thinking of you & how you’re doing, Nick. Thanks for sharing in what’s happening. I imagine the area around Kate’s urn. That is the sweetest daily tribute to her. Have you been taking pictures of it? Just to save in a special file folder since certain days have a special significance for each of you?
Sending the text messages to her is sweet too. Hugs to you & the kids.


#188

Sorry, Nick.

Losing a loved one to this disease in so heart-wrenching, because it dangles the carrot of hope in front of you, repeatedly, sometimes, for YEARS. Every time you think you’ve got it figured out and a plan in place, it changes. It’s so God-awful. Cancer sucks.

Sorry.


#189

Thanks, guys!

Everything is just dark right now and I think that’s ok. It’s supposed to be. Nights are long and quiet. That’s the worst part right now.

I mentioned this to Balv the other day. I am mourning two things here. Not only the loss of my wife and mother of my kiddos, but also the loss of my my kids innocence and a their joy. Their lives will be repaired- I’m a good dad. But, nothing will ever be exactly the same and that hurts. They are having to grow up faster than they should ever have to.

Also, is it masochistic of me to actually be terrified of when things do start getting better for me? My favorite romantic comedy has always been Sleepless in Seattle. (Guy loses his wife and moves to Seattle with his son to start over). In one scene, Jonah (Tom Hanks’ son) says “I’m starting to forget her.” That line has always killed me. I’m so scared of my kid telling me that.


#190

wow. i’ve never seen that movie. but i relate to that line. in terms of trying to move on and get past my brother’s death, i feel sometimes my connection to him fading. and i see it fading in his kids too…especially in the teenager…they were so close and jeff raised him as his own, but now that wonderful nephew of mine is hanging out w/ his biological dad and becoming a bit like him…which sucks…cause that guy is a fucking loser…

i’d say this much nick: it’s our job to keep that shit a live…but all in due time and moments…we can only handle so much and the roller coaster of grief isn’t something we really get to choose to get off and on…it’s just fucking there!!! that’s all i wanna do and feel like i need to do…document and remember and keep my brother’s memory alive…what other way can i honor him?

you already honor kate by being you and acting like the man you are if she were to be around. keep that path man, stay the course and know you’re loved.

i didn’t mean to make this about me and my bro…just my experience w/ grief and as an outsider looking at the storm my sister in law is going through…i just know she has the worst of it…for all the reasons you’re gonna have the worst of it…she was your day to day…your friend, your partner and voice of reason and counter balance. now you have to learn a life w/ out her…and navigating that sucks. the anniversaries, the valentine’s days, the father’s day and mother’s day and the weddings, the proms, the big moments in their lives. it’s gut-wrenching and tear-inducing.

stay your course nick. much love.


#191

Thank you, buddy!


#192

Obviously not quite the same thing, but my best friend died from leukemia about 7 years ago. He had a protracted battle for two years and multiple rounds of chemo, which eventually just kind of did him in. I spent the majority of his last few days with him at his parents house. I still think about him most days, but it hurts less than it did then. It brings you closer to other people who were there as well and you have this reservoir of emotion/memory/connection that you know is there even if you don’t tap into it often. That comforts me sometimes or makes me feel less alone.

And I meet new people and I see similar qualities in them or try to understand them through how I knew my friend. But mostly I’m just grateful for having known him and the impact he had on my life.

Wish you the best man.