I never thought it would happen this way.
The concept of cancer has always been familiar to me. I watched my best friend succumb to it when I was in college. But I never thought it would get me. I don't think anyone who ever had it ever thought it would get them. It's such a foreign concept.
To this day, even though it is creeping in my body, I still feel it is a strange thing. I still don't understand it.
I don't know why it had to be me. No, I am not angry. I am over that stage. I fully accept that I have it and that I am dying. I just don't understand why me. But maybe, it doesn't matter at this point. It doesn't matter why it had to be me. What matters is that I discovered soon enough. Maybe not early enough for me to get better but early enough for me to think aout my life, make amends, ask for forgiveness, give forgiveness, thank people, thank my past and take in whatever I can of this life that I am about to leave.
And that's what matters. I have long decided that I will not spend the rest of my life battling this demon. Not because I have given up but because I feel there are other things I would rather be doing.
I have spent most of my life for me. I have made decisions putting myself first all the time. I have always believed that I owe to myself to always look after me and I have to admit that even now, in my dying days, I still think it was worth it. It wasn’t always pleasant but I had that kind of selfishness that allowed me to enjoy what it brought me.
I had a great youth. It was vibrant… prolific… active. I pursued the thing I wanted and refused to settle for less than what I knew I deserve. I fought for the things I knew I should have and let go of those that pulled me down. I never compromised and when you live your life that way, it is expected that you will hurt many people.
I did. I know I did. It’s just strange how I see my past now that I know I have no future.
It’s strange because I am not sorry for the decisions I’ve made. When I first heard I have cancer, I expected my perspective to change. I thought I would have this burning desire to apologize to many people in my past but I don’t feel that desire. I don’t want to apologize for living the life I have always wanted.
I took what I wanted, pushed and pulled and shoved my way to the top. That was my goal, the top and I reached it.
It was not without heartaches. I failed more than I have succeeded but I used every failure as a stepping stone towards a higher position. It was what allowed me to survive. I never took my failures to heart, I put my failures in my head. I never forgot about them. I never let it take over me but I never forgot about them. I cherished my failures because it was what made me stronger.
It’s probably the one side of me people don’t or refuse to see. To them, I was a fierce force to reckon with, a bitch ready to claw my way to top, a heartless beast hell bent on protecting my kingdom. They never saw the bruises I sustained fighting. They never saw the callouses I had to grow just as so I could continue fighting.
I worked hard for what I got, really hard and I cannot apologize for wanting success.
Most of all, I can’t apologize for something that allowed me to give my family a better life and really, they are all that matter to me. I didn’t, don’t and never will care about other people and what they perceive or know of me. The only thing that matters is my family. The life I lived, I lived with them in my heart.
I know I was never an ideal daughter, never an ideal sister, never an ideal auntie. I was never the kind that sheltered people with my embrace but I did what I could the way I knew I could. I was never the one who was always home listening to people’s stories. I was the one who was away at work, barely home because I was buried with work. I was never the one people call when they need someone to go with them to a check up.
I was the one people call when they needed money. I was the one expected to pay the bills. I was the one expected to help all the time.
It was and is still fine for me. I made the choice to be that person by allowing it to happen. It was too late when I realized I wanted another role in the family. I wanted to be the one who is liked, preferred and adored. But I didn’t know how to be that person. I was so deep into this “generous bitch” role that I seriously don’t know how to be anything else.
But it’s okay. It’s my family and this is my worth to them. I know they are thankful for all the help I have extended and that’s enough. They don’t have to say it. I know they are thankful I was always there to help financially and stayed away physically.
I know it is supposed to hurt even a little and maybe it does but survival has always been my strongest suit and the only way I could avoid adding more pain to the pain of cancer is to not let things hurt me, especially those from my past.
So I will let it go. I lived my life the way I knew how and what’s done is done. I will not let the past hurt me. I am one of the few who were given a chance to know when I will die so I can make amends.
This is me making amends to myself. I can’t apologize to others for the choices I’ve made for me and my family but I have forgiven myself for the choices I’ve made for me and my family.
I am now prepared to go.