Only the Good Die Young
No, I am not talking about your number one requested song at the Piano Bar every weekend. I am talking real life. Billy Joel was on to something when he wrote this song. Only the Good Die Young is the saddest, truest, statement that we sing and dance too- until we are forced to mourn. Too many times I have seen this- friends with Cystic Fibrosis, Muscular Dystrophy, mental illness, and cancer. Why do the Good Die Young? 3-2-1 go.
This world is cruel. Life is unfair. Cancer sucks.
About 2 years ago I welcomed my mom's new boyfriend into our family. Shortly after they started dating, they were engaged and married. My mom hasn't had the best of luck when it came to men. I spent the majority of my life surrounded by abuse. All the abuse. Mentally, emotionally, physically. 23 years of abuse was all I knew. Prior to that my mom was cheated on, walked out on, and forced to be a single mother. Safe to say her life hasn't been easy, nor has she known true happiness. Until 2 years ago.
When I met this new man, it was like light just poured over my mom. I had never seen her so happy, and I had never met a nicer, kinder, gentler, sweeter soul. He was the most laid back man and did anything my mom asked followed by a "Yes Dear." He loved on her, and wrote her love notes and placed them around the house. He danced with her, sang with her, and together they made eachother complete.
They married in October, and by Jan he was diagnosed with Stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer. What in the holy hell?!! Together for only 6months, and my mom's world came crashing down. She thought she had met her soulmate, someone she would spend the next 25yrs with, and I thought she finally found the love she deserved. The doctors gave him 6months to live, but this man, this man said absolutely not! He was determined to prove everyone wrong- and he did!
While pancreatic cancer is a death sentence, some people can live several years with it. The majority, however, only get about 6-9months. This fight wasn't just with cancer. That would be too easy. The universe also threw at him diabetes, regulating insulin, and a ton of issues with blockages in his bile duct. He didn't give up and he didn't stop. Right up until the day he passed he spent time with family, friends, traveling, camping, and soaking up every moment of the life he had left. They packed up their home and moved to Florida so he could experience life on the ocean. They sold their car and bought a Jeep so they could roadtrip with the top down. Soon 6 months had passed, then 9 months had passed, and it was coming up on their 1 year wedding anniversary. He didn't stop. He did his Chemo around his life schedule. It knocked him down for a few days, but when he felt good he made sure to live life.
I can't imagine what it would be like to grieve the loss of yourself. To know that you're dying and you can't do anything to stop it. I know he was angry at times- why would god do this to such a good man? What did he do to deserve this? But he never allowed his anger to fester, and he tried to enjoy the moments he had left. Always putting on a happy face and a great attitude while around others. Always up for the next adventure.
End of last week this man lost his fight. He made it almost 2 years with Stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer. A good man had to die young. He left this earth surrounded by his whole family. Thankful he is finally at rest. It is heart wrenching to see such a gentle soul be given such an unfair battle.
J.E.A you will be missed. Thank you for loving my mom. Thank you for sharing your kindness. I am blessed to have called you family. May you rest in Peace.