Wednesday, May 9, 2012
A Fellow Warrior
So I'm at Sloan for my bi-weekly treatment. I'm in the waiting area having too good of a time laughing with my two friends who are keeping me company. I'm called into the room to give my vitals. I see a woman there , maybe a few years older than I am but not by much. They're asking her about her treatment and she says she doesn't know because this is her first time. She starts to cry. I try to make eye contact with her, to give her a look that says I understand. But she keeps her eyes down. I wait for my blood to be drawn and then I walk over to this stranger and tell her, "I know you're scared, I know this sucks but it gets easier." She starts to cry harder, breaking out into sobs and all I can do is lean down and hold her. I give her my name and tell her if she needs anything that I am here for her. She doesn't say anything to me but looks at me with such a mixture of sadness and fear that it breaks my heart. I can't tell her that everything will be ok because I don't know that it will. That's the thing with cancer; every case is different and it can turn on a dime at any given moment. When she walks into the waiting room I'm still there with my friends but she is alone and I wonder if she has a family to walk her through this or friends to cheer her on. At that moment I am grateful to have both.