its hard not to take it personally...

Patrick Swayze died tonight. He was 57 years old. He was diagnosed with cancer in 2008 and now he's gone. Every death, every new diagnosis... feels more and more personal. I have chemo day after tomorrow and my heart is heavy.

What did WE do? The millions of us struggling with cancer, trying to get better... trying to outrun the devil that is chasing us. What did we do to deserve any of this? What did our family and friends do to deserve the hard task of watching us struggle? And most importantly... how can we fix it?

I sent out a "tweet" (a message on Twitter) just after I heard about Patrick Swayze's death that said... "I HATE CANCER. RIP Patrick Swayze. When will we find a cure for cancer?"

I received a reply from someone I don't know that said... "What if it was demonstrated that harboring hatred creates cancer? Would you still hate it?"

The answer is I don't know. I really don't. I know that you're supposed to love your enemies but I'm having a hard time loving something that is trying to take me out. Its MY life. I'm supposed to live it on MY terms. Instead, my whole world revolves around cancer.

This thing is hard. Its scary and its difficult. I am grateful that I have a fighting chance at life but even knowing that right now I'm doing alright, the fear of harsh and painful death remains close to my heart. For every moment that I laugh and giggle, there is a moment where I reflect and cry. For everyday that I go through life wondering at the beauty and miracles of life... I do have days where I wonder what it will be like if this cancer comes back after me.

I'm trying to outrun the devil. And he is on my ass something serious. Death isn't the scary part. Its the pain that would come before the ultimate end that freaks me out. When it gets to the point where there's nothing that anyone can do except pray and hope for a miracle. When the doctors and medical staff can only "make you comfortable" because your body is shutting down. When you're living just barely enough so that your friends and family can say goodbye and I love you.

I tell you its hard not to take this cancer-thing personally.  I have a sense of urgency now. I would normally be going to sleep about this time, but instead I'm going to stay up for another hour or two and work on this book. If you see me, and I have bags under my eyes... its not the cancer... its the push to make my mark.

Gotta do it. Gotta make it. Gotta leave something behind.

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