When my best friend was diagnosed with ovarian cancer 2 years ago, I tried to be hopeful. I knew the prognosis was bad and I knew we would never grow old together, but I hoped for the best anyway. I thought we had several years ahead of us to celebrate holidays, blow out birthday candles, and watch our children grow older. In that time, I tried to be positive. I wrote blog posts about making changes in my life, about being grateful and counting my blessings. We spent time together. We laughed, we cried, we traveled.
But then we lost her.
She was 37 years old. She left a 3 year old without a mother. She left one of the nicest guys I have ever known without a partner. She left her parents to grieve their only daughter. She left my children without the godmother they adored. She left me without the one person that knew my darkest secrets, my most annoying habits, and yet chose to love me anyway.
It is hard to be grateful after that.
Truth be told, it is hard not to be resentful and bitter. For the past month, I have been buying groceries, baking muffins, pumping gas, seeing patients and Christmas shopping and in the back of my head, there is a nagging voice that keeps asking me what the point of all of it is. I have moments of grief that come out of nowhere. These moments are familiar. I have experienced my share of loss and tragedy. But somehow, it seems worse this time. It seems even more tragic, even more senseless and even more devastating.
It seems unfair that life goes on. It doesn’t seem right that we buried her and then we still go to work, check instagram and make holiday plans. I know we have to carry on but it doesn’t feel right. It seems that with her passing, a part of me died too. The part that tried to see the good in everything is gone. The optimistic part of me that always believed things happened for a reason no longer exists. Afterall, there is no good reason to lose someone so young, so beautiful and so vibrant.
So the days will become weeks and the weeks will become months, and the months will become years. We will live our lives because that is what we do.
But in the end, we will never be the same without her.