The Elephant in the Room is Cancer. Tea is the Relief Conversation Provides.

Dear Cancer, It’s Been Complicated

by Marissa ThomasSurvivor, Breast CancerJune 1, 2021View more posts from Marissa Thomas

Dear Cancer,

It’s been complicated.

I’m sure a lot of people would like to know how we met.

Were we introduced by family (genetics), online dating (Google searching my symptoms), restaurant, or bar (bad eating/too much drinking)? No, you were like a bad blind date gone all the way wrong that decided to pitch a tent and stay for a while, uninvited at that. A thief that came in the middle of the night.

I have many analogies, but I’ll stop there.

I swear I never wanted to meet you. I mean, who does? But here you were, teaching me all kinds of lessons along the way about myself and life in general.

The lessons you ask, well they go a little something like this.

Life can change in an instant! One day you’re planning your Halloween costume and the next you’re planning dates at the infusion center with your favorite RN. You taught me that life is fleeting and at any moment it will shift.

Be present! I used to move so swiftly through life, trying to be everywhere and everything to everyone that I forgot to enjoy the moment at hand. If you’re always running to the next moment, what happens to the one you’re in? You showed me that if you don’t slow down, you’ll miss it.

It’s ok to let go. Walking away from anything and everything that no longer serves me purpose. You reminded me I can love from a distance and be ok.

While I hate that you and I started an entanglement (changes relationship status to “It’s Complicated”), I’m thankful for the beautiful, dark and twisted journey we’ve been on together. You’ve brought people and opportunities into my life that I never thought were possible. Unfortunately, you touched their lives too (you dirty bastard) and the one common thread is you. So even though you showed up to turn our lives upside down, you don’t get to choose how we live.

Cancer, you whispered to me “Either learn me or I’m a lesson”. But I’m pretty sure I was the lesson for you.

“Middle fingers up, put them hands high, wave it in his face, tell him boy bye”

Boy Bye!

My favorite lesson

To read this letter and the other letters to cancer, click here to read and download the June 2021 Magazine

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