Before and After

May 25, 2012

That day.

That day our world changed. I wish we could have chosen a different adventure. A different ending. But it wasn’t that kind of story.

We rushed home from the doctor. Packed my bags for the strangest journey ahead. What do you pack when you don’t know where you’re going? How long? What was this for again?

Somewhere down the road a hospital bed was ready. Transfusions and biopsies and a toxic cocktail of medicine were waiting for me. For me.

We could not hold back the urgency. Just as we could not hold back the flood that swept through our house only days before. Strewn with wedding presents, muddy paw prints, unpacked honeymoon suitcases, and photos being hung to dry.

In the centre of the cacophony, we stopped.

We stopped.

Just you and me.

You held me.

And we wept.

Was this really happening? To me? To us?

I’m so sorry.

You can change your mind. It’s only been 11 days.

See that door? You can walk out of it.

You said it could just have easily been you and not me. You said if it had been you that I would have stuck to you like glue.

In that moment you became rock. And I became sand. And you tried so hard to stop me from crumbling. Just like you’ve done for 8 years now. I long to be solid again.

From that day those photos hanging to dry would be known as ‘before cancer’. In years to follow we would look at them with sweet nostalgia. Longing for our world to feel like that again. A small jealous notch would catch our breath as we would look at the people innocently smiling back at us.

And from that day our life was divided up this way.

Before and after.

Innocence and grief.

That day.

The day we met our souls.