Nothing else matters when you are faced with the harsh reality that your parents will be gone someday. That you will one day mourn the loss of the first two people you ever loved.
In 1998 my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. She has always been a strong, healthy woman, so it was no surprise to anyone when she fought it and won. Until 2002. When the doctors told us that it had come back. With even stronger resolve than the first time, she fought back again. And so far, she is winning. But until the doctors tell us that she is officially in remission, I live everyday in fear that my mom might not be there when my first child is born.
My father has been her rock, ever stronger for her, ever more supportive of her, ever more loving. Their faith and their relationship continually strengthened by this test. He has always been, and is still, my hero.
Which is why it came as a great shock to me this evening when he told me he has prostate cancer. How could this man, who I have idealized all my life, be fallible? Equally inconceivable to me is the thought that my daddy might not be there to walk me down the aisle someday.
And this, mere weeks after learning that my cousin, who is my age and one of my dearest friends, has just had her own brush with skin cancer.
At this moment, I cannot imagine how I am going to deal with this. They say "prepare for the worst, but hope for the best." But I refuse to accept this. I refuse to even entertain the idea that I could lose both parents so early in life. And yet at the same time, I am forced to realize that life is so fragile. That we may not have as much time as we once thought.
Friends in blogland, tell your parents you love them today. Tell your children you love them. And if you have ever been religious in your life, please pray for my papa. Thanks.