Soon after Dr. Fried gave me the cancer diagnosis, I thought about Cliff.
He’d need to come to appointments, stand by me during surgery, and take care of me afterwards, possibly during months of chemo. He’d do the money and most of the insurance stuff. Cancer would curtail our summer plans and maybe the plans for the rest of our lives.
As the days went by, I knew it was my cancer. The burden was on me (In me! My uterus to be exact).
But I tried to be mindful of how this would affect Cliff, too.
Cliff’s mom and I used to talk for hours. Many of her pronouncements on life proved true, but one didn’t. “When you go into surgery, you go alone,” she told me, recounting the story of her thyroid operation at age forty. Nope. Not me. I took her son with me. I never felt alone.
Our good friend Lisa Flinn wrote Cliff this note two weeks after my surgery:
Others too, thought of Cliff. Visitors arrived with a favorite beer for him to enjoy while we all chatted. Those who prepared food sent plenty since they know my husband chows down with gusto.
I’ve made a new vow: Remember the caregiver!
Photo Top: Cliff and I at Mazen’s first birthday last fall. Note the grins of grandparents.
Photo Bottom: Lisa’s note. The “clear to see (even for me)” is in reference to her macular degeneration. Lisa’s a cancer survivor. Read her post, “Tai Chi Brings Balance after Breast Cancer” on Friend for the Ride.
She’s one of my cancer role models! Others include Frances, Lisa W., Vibeke, Karen, Linda, Mark, and Haralee (Check out her sleepwear line!) Thanks, friends.