Wrestling the Unseeable

by thoughtsatlarge

When Lisa was suffering the horrific, barbaric, debilitating effects of chemotherapy, first via standard treatments and then later clinical trials, there was nothing I could do to alleviate her pain. I was constantly chasing the speeding eight ball trying to understand the side effects of her treatment, knowing all the while that I was helpless to mitigate them. The best I could do was to be with her. In seven years of treatment, I never missed an appointment or treatment with her. I was where I needed to be, by her side, as her husband and her friend. In truth, it was all I could do for her. Unfortunately, we wrestled the unseeable and lost.

Now she’s gone forever, and I’m still helpless to alleviate anyone’s pain or suffering. This time, it is my children who suffer as they try to come to terms with losing their mother. It is as if Lisa’s cancer continues to punish my family. The bad dreams at night and the painful realizations in the light of day are both beyond my ability to ease. I’m tired of losing to cancer. All I can offer them is loving words, long distance hugs, and a virtual shoulder.

At the party we held in Lisa’s honor after she died, the kids and I each gave short speeches. Cameron stated in his that, while Lisa had died, cancer had not beaten her, she had taken the bastard with her. Unfortunately, I think he overstated it a bit because he, his sister and I are still suffering from cancer’s destructive forces, this time in the form of grief. I continue to wrestle the unseeable and lose.