I have quite a bit to say about radiation and my cancer journey so far, but now is not the time. I don’t feel like a fighter today… I feel nothing but loss. Life threw us another curve ball and this time we didn’t conquer it with pomp and circumstance. This time f@#$% cancer- I can’t even say it… Cancer can take your life even when it’s someone else’s disease. You can cheer and whoop, and say that we beat cancer in death, but the truth is we were robbed. This world has been robbed of a mother, a mentor, a best friend, a grandmother, an aunt, a guiding light.
I don’t remember the day I first met my mother-in-law, Nancy Ann Rensink (Nance- if you knew what was good for you). It’s as if we always loved each other. On June 21st, Ma finally came to live with us. It was a truly happy occasion for my family. Exactly one week later, she was in the hospital with a partial blockage. Stage IV ovarian cancer is a bitch.
I started radiation the same week she came to live with us. We shared our oncologist and I had daydreams about doing treatments together, holding hands. I visited her before radiation and after, and hubby and I spent every day coming and going so she never felt alone. Finally after 5 days she was home. 4th of July we spent across the street at a picnic and she was having so much fun. We never knew how close she was to the end, even when it was in front of us. I thought she was coming to live with us, and instead she was coming to our house to die with us. I know philosophically (and theologically), we were blessed to have that special time together and to give her a place surrounded by her family. In reality- it blows.
While I am blessed to have loved this woman as my own, and to have had 9 years with her, I can’t help but wonder how much more we could have done together; how many more questions I wish I will be able to ask her and can’t. I want to scream and yell that cancer won but she never gave in to it. And although it took her from this life, SHE won! She is free of pain and cancer. It doesn’t give me peace in my heart today but hopefully one day soon it will. Nance wants it that way.