Cancer is a Thief

I’m really mad at cancer. My wife has it for the second time and currently is doing well medically. Emotionally, I’m not so sure. And I’m not so sure about me either. I don’t know how she does it. She goes to work and does everything normally as if she doesn’t have cancer. I have it, but it’s in my head. I don’t have cancer medically. I have it psychologically. It lurks behind every thought. It’s an invisible weight that just hangs on the end of every thought.

We plan for future vacations and such, or talk about our son’s next semester at college and at the end of each of those thoughts, unspoken, is cancer in the back of my mind whispering, “Yes, but I’m still here and you never know…” 

Cancer is a thief. It has stolen my sense of security. It has stolen my ability to relax and think about the future. I feel terrible though. I don’t even have the cancer. I feel like I don’t have the right to have these worries if she is going about her daily life as if it’s not there. And so, I do too. I play pretend with her every day and hide my worry and stress as if it just isn’t there. I want to rant and rave and rage out loud against it. I want to fight the cancer with as much fury as I have, but that’s not the way it works. Cancer is a slow, sly, sinister enemy that lurks in the darkness. Unfortunately, sometimes cancer treatment is slow and silent as well and shouting doesn’t help. I guess this is my little shout, or perhaps my way of letting out a little of that steam, that pressure that builds up in my head.

36 responses to “Cancer is a Thief

  1. It must have been so tough for you Phil, and I’m so glad that your wife is doing well. Always here if you ever need to chat, and you should never feel guilty for feeling in the way you do – it’s perfectly natural to be unsure and not want to make plans… Thinking of you all xx

  2. Writing a post like this is an excellent way of reducing the pressure in your head. As a cancer survivor, and the recipient of the thievery that cancer perpetrates on the family, I can tell you your feelings although painful, are normal. My prayers are with you and your wife, and a sincere wish that these feelings will go away over time.

  3. I was thinking about Mrs. Phil when you wrote about going to Disney…. It’s good that she’s maintaining her regular routine and that her treatment is going well. Yet it must be agonizing to live in a sort of limbo, not sure what the next day will bring. Having a rant, a rage is a good thing! Keeping you in my thoughts, friend! 💛

    • Thanks Meg. It’s completely maddening because normally if I have worries I’d talk to her, but in this case I don’t. Btw, thanks for the nice review on Amazon for my Fifty Shades!

      • Yep I get that… When your partner is the one in trouble it’s tough. Harry has MS. Not the same but still pretty worrisome. He tends to ignore it so I worry for both of us… And you’re welcome!

  4. My heart goes out to you all. I thank heaven that Mrs Phil is doing well. Do take care and write more on here if you feel inclined for as someone above says, the writing down of it is very therapeutic.

  5. I’m so sorry to hear/read this news, Phil. Still, a very eloquent post, and the rage and uncertainty are warranted, and I hope they help you (I’m no medical expert, but just a simple human, so take my 2 cents’ that way). My best thoughts to you, Mrs. Phil, and the rest of your family!

    • Thanks Leigh. I’m not sure I was “eloquent” as you said. I was just venting. These occasional posts that I don’t share on any other social media are my way of venting, and it helps as does your comments.

      • I’m so pleased to have tinily helped. You (or if your wife has time to read blogs) might enjoy Swoosieque’s blog “Cancer Isn’t Pink,” here on WordPress. She has not only lived through the thief cancer, but her son succumbed to a form of it last year. Again, I wish you all healing, in whatever form(s) it may come.

      • Thanks Leigh! I’ll go check her blog out

  6. Kimberly Steward

    Oh Phil, I have been wondering how you both have been doing. Please vent/rage away. It is likely helpful to blow off some steam. Know that your readers are here for you, at least in the greater interwebs. .

  7. You hit the nail on the head. It is a theif, not just physically — but mentally. And when your mind “goes there” you feel guilty. Let’s face it, that’s what the “C word” wants you to do… worry. But truth be told, no matter how positive you try to be, you can’t help it when it’s your loved one. So, I’ll make a deal with you. At this end, I’ll think only positive thoughts for you and your beautiful wife EVERY SINGLE DAY. She’s strong, and doing great, And my friend… we’ll wait for your blog with the good news. 🙂

  8. I can’t word well about this, having experienced so many similar feelings, but let me just tell you, your feelings are normal. I think John and Debbie have the words closest to my own thoughts.
    Still wishing you both all the best.

  9. I am “liking” this only to show my support in this awful situation. Stay strong for each other. Cancer is an awful beast no matter it’s form.

  10. Wishing you both the very best 🙂

  11. Yell. Scream. Holler. Throw something!! Right here. We’ll listen, yell, scream and throw stuff right there with you. Keeping you both in my thoughts and prayers. <3

  12. Rant, and rage, and shout your words into your posts. We will hear them, listen, and send you our best wishes.

  13. F*ck cancer, Phil. It totally deserves it.

    I understand your anger, and boy, are you entitled to it. Go out and kick a tree. No–

    Go somewhere where you can make a lot of noise and break things and no one will notice. Bring supplies: (1) Bat. (2) Tyvek coveralls. (3) Shoe covers. (4) Goggles. (5) Multiple cans of canned tomatoes. (6) Wall or tree trunk to line up cans.

    F*ck those tomatoes. F*ck every last one of

    Don’t forget to yell “F*ck YOU, Cancer!!” with every whomp of the bat.

    I hope this helps you, Phil. I know it will help me, because I hate canned tomatoes.

    (a) I am so glad to hear that therapy thus far is showing promise.
    (b) really extremely glad.
    (c) so much I posted here. : )

  14. *What Babe said above* It necessary to go blow out that rage to get it out of you so it doesn’t hurt you…and it lets you have the space to stuff it back in when you have to. So very sorry to hear about this Phil, but focusing on the positive with everyone else and sending healing thoughts to you both. (you need them too!)

  15. It is hard being the one without cancer. It is hard watching and waiting. It is hard staying quiet because you know what you are feeling is nothing compared to what your loved one is feeling. But it is harder still if you don’t have an outlet for your feelings. Continue to use this blog as a place to vent, rage, scream, and curse so that you can stay strong for your family.

  16. Good read! Thanks for sharing! I just wrote a short story about cancer as well.

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