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crying doesn't mean I'm not strong

Posts: 1
Joined: Apr 2009

Just about three years ago my father was diagnosed with colon cancer. Immediatley we were sent to do tests and scans and crazy stuff I'd never heard of. With in less than three months we was doing chemo, radiation and surgery. Since that point there have been few highs and many lows. It is so incredibly difficult to watch the strongest man I know deteriorate. He has fought with all of his being and it is so difficult to watch some one wants to live so bad have to struggle with just about everything. I know he's scared, angry and hurting but doesn't want to give up. At times i think that would be best instead of all the suffering. We were a very close family up until his diagnoses but now it seems we have fallen apart. My eldest sister can seem to come to terms with his illness and the end result. My mother is a nervous wreck and has many sleepless nights and heartache. I have to keep it together but have found myself having emotional break downs every couple of months. I've had to realize that sometimes being strong is way harder than just crying, and that crying doesn't mean that I am not strong. Please if any one has any words of wisdom, they are greatly appreciated

soccerfreaks's picture
Posts: 2801
Joined: Sep 2006

Last I heard, Nena, the Surgeon General has not announced that crying is a carcinogen or a cause of heart disease.


But do not let it consume you.

Much of what you describe, speaking of your family and your dad and yourself, is, regrettably, not an abnormal effect of the disease. It seems to go beyond the cells it attacks, it seems to attack those around the afflicted one as well.

Do not let it consume you.

Do not let it take more than it is genetically predisposed to do. Love your dad, love your sister, love your family, and provide all of the support you can. Respect the way that others deal with their stress and grief, just as you would expect them to respect your own.

If you need to cry on occasion, then cry.

But do not let it consume you.

Best wishes to you and your family, and, in particular, your hard-fighting dad.

Take care,


lindaprocopio's picture
Posts: 2022
Joined: Oct 2008

I have no wisdom, but will try to gently turn your face to what you already know. The sad truth is that we are all one day closer to death every single day, every single one of us. That sounds harsh, but truly is not said to be cruel. I'm reminding you that your dad is not facing anything that ALL of us, every single living being, faces. Cancer makes us face that truth: none of us is immortal and all of us will lose those that we love one day; and one day we will also be gone and leave behind heartbreak and grief for those who love us. That grief honors the life that has passed, and so even grief is a tribute and an act of love. Facing that truth is one of the gifts of having cancer, and there is great liberation in that. I'm not telling you to try and find peace with with father's eventual death; I'm trying to say that you have the opportunity to come to grips with death as a natural occurance for all of us: you, me, every single one of us. Then cancer is no scarier than anything else, as natural as winter following autumn. There is a joy in accepting this inevitability, as your priorities get re-adjusted, and each day is sweeter and more important when you realize how finite our time is on this beautiful earth.

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