Love is a strong force. It is the kind of force that drives one to do everything in their power to alleviate the pain of their loved one. A kind of force that causes sympathy pains. Sympathy pain is quite the ridiculous phenomenon but it is still a thing. Like dog nannies and socialites, those are ridiculous too. (I feel myself digressing).
Watching a loved one go through a difficult time can be harrowing for two reasons; first, a person you love is suffering. Second, you cannot complain about it. Such is the experience of a cancer victim’s family. You stay strong and pray with them all the while holding your tears. Then later you cry in the washroom or shower. The last thing you want is for them to see you cry. Why would you be crying? You are not in pain. You are not going through the horrors of chemotherapy. You are not looking mortality smack in the face. So why, why are there tears in your eyes? Really?! You are sympathizing?!
A cancer victim’s family does not feel entitled to sadness. The only thing you feel you should do is try to make your loved one comfortable. You pray incessantly. You get on your knees and pray. You plead with your God to keep your loved one alive. You stay up all night afraid to miss the call that ends your loved one’s life for you.
The hardest is when your loved one is too sick so you pray for God to take their life. This is the hardest prayer to compose. It is a prayer punctuated with betrayal and grief. What if they somehow, by some strange coincidence, found out that you prayed for their death? They would hate you, whether or not they wanted the same thing.
My point is cancer is bad. It is so bad it affects even the people who can only see it from the sidelines. God for us all.