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Love was hard with cancer. It was a poison you had to carry around as it weighed heavy on your heart. But you’d rather fight the battle in solace and silence than have someone look at you in that pitiful way. Life threatening ailments have the tendency to cause people to act out of character. They do things because they feel bad for you. They look at you in that “I pity you” type of way, mostly because no one would ever admit to pitying a cancer patient.

But back to love. Love is always hard, relationships are difficult because people are complex. It could all be so simple but as humans we tend to color every circumstance complicated. How can you trust someone is in something for the long-hall? You never can truly know that. You have to trust at face value and hope it works out forever. It’s scary, terrifying even. Now you want to add cancer to the mix. People run away at their own feelings, let alone the thought of caring about someone with a terminal illness.

And yet all some of us want is to live out our days to the fullest extent that we can, we want to love today and be hopeful of tomorrow. We want things to go smoothly with little stress but it rarely works out that way. Life happens. It messes up your perfect vision and challenges your desires. It breaks you and often times, it hurts. So we’re left adjusting to the turmoil and just rolling with the punches. But for us, ͏life is a timetable- how long will the good last, when will I relapse, can I trust remission. Again, there’s no definitive answer here. There’s zero trust. You just live and hope the people in your life could find comfort and security in the simplicity as well.

As for love, I have no idea. I can’t imagine lying about your body demolishing itself is the way to begin a healthy relationship but at the same point, why is it any of their business? I’m sure they didn’t push every secret and aspect of their life to the front at the start. But really it’s not about lying, it’s about wanting someone to look at you and truly see you, not look at you and see cancer. The worst thing in the world you can do is fall in love with someone and watch them change their i love you face to an i feel bad for you face. The second worst thing is when they stick with you because you’re a ticking time bomb instead of because they actually want to build with you. It’s difficult to separate the cancer from your own reflection, let alone your identity through someone else’s eyes.

-AR

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