In Memoriam

“How can the dead be truly dead when they still live in the souls of those who are left behind?”
—Carson McCullers, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter

It has been a hard week.

It has been a hard week for me. It has been a hard week in Cancerland. Every single morning, I woke up to news of yet another friend who has died from metastatic breast cancer.

“How often will the vast emptiness astonish me like a complete novelty and make me say, “I never realized my loss till this moment”? The same leg is cut off time after time.”
—C.S. Lewis

I struggle with what to say – words are not enough. They are never enough. They never heal the wounds that continually reopen, no stitch is strong enough for that. The staccato repetition is numbing – although it should still hurt, it lessens with each blow.

“Absence is a house so vast that inside you will pass through its walls and hang pictures on the air.” 
― Pablo Neruda

Our community is reeling, and I am grieving, over and over again. I don’t have words, but I also can’t stay silent.

11 thoughts on “In Memoriam

  1. Emily, you are giving a great gift to so many women and men by putting into words what they long to say but do not know how.

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  2. I stayed in my bedroom all day and sobbed. I would stop to breathe, blow my nose and then sob some more. My daughter knocked and came in and curlled up next to me.She asked why I was so sad… I couldn’t stay silent and blurted “so many of my MBC friends are dying!.. I’m dying! Children are motherless! It’s so unfair! We need help!”
    I rarely ever share these thoughts with her.,but I was beside myself with grief, and felt so alone in my illness.
    I think I’ll go to bed early too. Love to you Emily. Thank you for not staying silent.

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  3. Emily I’m reading words and I’m sending you and your family all my thoughts of strength and comfort. Hollow I know, but it’s all I’ve got.

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  4. I have MBC to my liver. Evidently it was there at original diagnosis in 2013 but we only realized it in 2018. I started targeted therapy with Falsodex and Ibrance. In the beginning the tumors shrunk and then I was treated with steroids for aspiration pneumonia and tumors multiplied. Now they are under control and the MD mentioned the possibility of a remission in the future. IS THIS POSSIBLE? Has any one been off therapy and stayed in remission??

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