You are being selfish, I tell myself. Her death isn’t about you, it is about her. And yet my mind keeps bringing my thoughts back to comparisons – comparisons of her cancer to mine. I need mine to be different in some way, so that I can stand on the hope that mine won’t come back.
You are being selfish, I tell myself. You should be feeling deep empathy for her close friends and family. For her husband. I cannot even begin to image how horrible it is to lose the love of your life at such a young age, and yet my thoughts bring me back to me.
You are being selfish, I tell myself. I begin to count the people in my support groups, in my circles. The statistics say that approximately 30% will become metastatic and die from this disease. I cannot help but think that with each friend that I lose, it increases my odds of survival. My mind reminds me that statistics don’t apply at the individual level. They don’t translate down. And yet, I feel this overwhelming sense of guilt over thinking that her death means that my chances of survival are improved.
You are being selfish, I tell myself. These are the most horrible thoughts. With every thought of her loss, tears fall from my eyes. Are they tears for her or tears for me?
You are being selfish, I tell myself – over and over again.
Feature image license CC by Mark.