Apr 18, 2011 - 8:41 am
Through it all I've had 3 mentors to turn to when I felt like giving up, or that it was too hard. My mom was diagnosed with Stage 3C ovarian cancer in 2006. A very dear old friend was diagnosed with cancer in her brain around the same time I was diagnosed. Then out of the blue, a beautiful young lady showed up at my door offering her hand in friendship. She too had breast cancer and knew I'd probably appreciate a friend who understood. Now I've known the girl her whole life as we grew up together in the same neighborhood, but there is a 12 year age difference. Until that day I knew her as little Michelle down the street. Michelle helped me through the loss of my friend who had brain cancer, the loss of my mom in 2009, a new scare also in 2009 when they thought I had developed hurthle cell carcinoma, and then my recurrence and metastases to my bones this past fall. What is significant is that all 3 of them vowed we'd beat this together. This was not meant to be.
Michelle's recurrence started a few months after my initial diagnosis. We fought side by side in our chemo chairs every week, and by telephone in between. In November of 2010, our oncology team gave her the news that she needed to start putting her affairs in order. Her cancer had spread to her liver and bones. I'm the first person she called. She asked me to help her put together a slide show video for her funeral and to make the cd for her service. March 7, 2011 I got the call at 5:30 in the morning that my Michelle had passed away. She was only 34 years old and left behind 3 young children.
I'm lost! My mentors are all gone now and I am left fighting alone for the first time and I have no idea how to do it alone. I learned so much from Michelle. I remember a chemo day that I was mumbling and grumbling about having to go on my facebook page. Michelle who was too ill to get chemo left me a comment that said,"I wish I could get chemo." Talk about an eye opener. But it is exactly what I needed. Now whenever I start grumbling and dreading the lovely chemo after effects, I think of her words. And I am grateful to be going.
But I'm hurting so badly inside at her loss. I don't understand why I am still here and she is gone. I don't know who will kick me in the butt when I need it now. I honestly believe that as hard as it was to bury my mom, burying Michelle was harder. I saw what could be my end in bold reality and it terrifies me.
Sorry to have prattled on for so long. I just needed some place to put it, a place where maybe somebody will understand.