In Memoriam

“How can the dead be truly dead when they still live in the souls of those who are left behind?”
—Carson McCullers, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter

It has been a hard week.

It has been a hard week for me. It has been a hard week in Cancerland. Every single morning, I woke up to news of yet another friend who has died from metastatic breast cancer.

“How often will the vast emptiness astonish me like a complete novelty and make me say, “I never realized my loss till this moment”? The same leg is cut off time after time.”
—C.S. Lewis

I struggle with what to say – words are not enough. They are never enough. They never heal the wounds that continually reopen, no stitch is strong enough for that. The staccato repetition is numbing – although it should still hurt, it lessens with each blow.

“Absence is a house so vast that inside you will pass through its walls and hang pictures on the air.” 
― Pablo Neruda

Our community is reeling, and I am grieving, over and over again. I don’t have words, but I also can’t stay silent.

11 thoughts on “In Memoriam

  1. Emily, you are giving a great gift to so many women and men by putting into words what they long to say but do not know how.


  2. I stayed in my bedroom all day and sobbed. I would stop to breathe, blow my nose and then sob some more. My daughter knocked and came in and curlled up next to me.She asked why I was so sad… I couldn’t stay silent and blurted “so many of my MBC friends are dying!.. I’m dying! Children are motherless! It’s so unfair! We need help!”
    I rarely ever share these thoughts with her.,but I was beside myself with grief, and felt so alone in my illness.
    I think I’ll go to bed early too. Love to you Emily. Thank you for not staying silent.


  3. Emily I’m reading words and I’m sending you and your family all my thoughts of strength and comfort. Hollow I know, but it’s all I’ve got.


  4. Life is so unfair. We all eventually learn that lesson. We can just be kind to each other when we are here. Take care.


  5. I have MBC to my liver. Evidently it was there at original diagnosis in 2013 but we only realized it in 2018. I started targeted therapy with Falsodex and Ibrance. In the beginning the tumors shrunk and then I was treated with steroids for aspiration pneumonia and tumors multiplied. Now they are under control and the MD mentioned the possibility of a remission in the future. IS THIS POSSIBLE? Has any one been off therapy and stayed in remission??


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