Last night, I went to bed feeling worried and a bit overwhelmed. The past month has been a difficult one for me, physically and emotionally. I had another hospital stay, have had to battle with stupid government policies on what makes someone disabled, and have also had to say goodbye to my pseudo-kid, who has chosen to go back home and is battling her own demons. And I have no control over any of these things. Anyone who knows me knows that I am a bit of a control freak, and don’t deal well with things outside my realm of control.
But this morning, I awoke to sad news filling up my Facebook timeline. Maya Angelou, an influential and beautiful soul has passed. She was definitely the voice of a generation and an inspiration to all women. I felt this passing in my very soul, as her words and her grace have always provided comfort to me personally. I thank her for her strength and for providing the words that we need to hear.
And then I saw more bad news. A good friend who has been battling Stage 4 breast cancer for years has just found out that the cancer has spread to her brain. My heart is breaking for her, her husband, and their children as they continue to battle with this disgusting disease. And I not only became sad… I became angry. Because she doesn’t deserve this. She doesn’t deserve to have to fight this struggle.
Sure, people will say “No one deserves Cancer,” and maybe that is true, but it seems that there are some people more deserving than others. Child rapists. Murderers. People who lie, cheat, and hurt other people for their own enjoyment. THOSE people deserve Cancer. Not my sweet friend. Not my little cousin, who lost his four-year battle with cancer last year at the ripe old age of 7. Not my uncle, who passed away at the age of 60 who was one of the most loving people I have ever know. These people do not deserve to suffer this way.
And all I could think this morning was “I don’t have enough casserole recipes.” Casseroles seemed to be our mothers and grandmothers solution for any ailment. When people get sick, you bring their family a casserole so that they don’t have to worry about what they are going to eat. You bring them a casserole to help comfort them when all they want to do is crawl into a corner and cry. You bring them a casserole because damn it – sometimes that is the only thing you can do – pour your love for them into some sort of physical form and hope that is does the trick. I know you can’t cure cancer with a casserole. But what the hell else can you do when you have no control. No words will make things better. Love and prayers will only take you so far.
And today, I am angry. I am angry that we are still having to deal with this wretched disease. It took my grandfather, my uncle, my cousin, and countless others in my lifetime. Hell, we eliminated fucking polio, but cancer rages on. Our government and its people seem focused on attacking women, minorities, the poor, our troops, the gays, and anything else that will keep the attention off where it truly needs to be – It’s people. Our people are suffering and dying every day, but we look elsewhere. WHY can’t we get this under control?? Why must we lose the ones that we love, those people who have lived their lives well and have helped others. I used to say that in corporations, the good people will leave and the bad people will stay forever. It seems that this is not so very different from how the world seems to work.
I do not want to see my friend, nor her family, suffer from this dreadful disease. This is a woman who went out of her way after my heart attack at my wedding to come and tell me how worried she was about ME and that she was thinking and praying for me. I’m like, “Lady, you are dealing with Stage 4 breast cancer! Don’t be worried about me!” But that is the kind of person she is. She is a beautiful person and I do not want to see her in pain. I do not want to even think about what her husband and children are going through. I certainly don’t want to think about my own health struggles. All I want to do is make them a casserole and give a fraction of my loving spirit to them to help them.
But sometimes, there just aren’t enough casserole recipes.