This Fall Break I ended up staying in Dallas because my plans to visit my friend in Denver fell through. Overall, I am not so upset that I didn’t do anything exciting like go to ACL or travel back home. It was night to have my apartment all to myself and just be in solitude. Both Saturday and Sunday I FaceTimed with one of my best guy friends, Jacques, from back home. He goes to school at Wash U but was back in Cleveland to get chemo and radiation done. Jacques has RMS which is a type of cancer that attacks the tissues in the body. This is his third round of the cancer coming back and quite honestly it scares me. On Saturday we FaceTimed for about 5 hours just catching up and figuring out what we are going to do when all of our friends come home for break. But every hour or so he was constantly being check on by nurses to make sure he was ok and giving him medication and pain relievers. I didn’t really want to talk about the cancer but instead wanted to keep his mood lifted since he had just gone out of treatment and wanted to get his mind off of it. His hair is growing back which is a step but he doesn’t think it will stay for long because of more treatments in the future. I always have to come up with creative ways to keep Jacques thinking about something else even if it requires me staying up late talking to him.
These past couple of weeks have been difficult for me. While it seems like everything is fine on the outsides, I’m slowly breaking down on the inside. Recently, a family friend of mine passed away from cancer. Her name was Riley and was only 17. It is crazy how this disease takes away the best people in the world. Riley has an interesting story because there could’ve been a chance to save her life. She was given the option to amputate her leg to try and stop the cancer from spreading but both Riley and her mom decided against it because she didn’t want to be “deformed”. During her final months in this world, she moved out of the hospital and decided to stay in the comfort of her home with family and friends surrounding her. Riley’s dad even allowed her boyfriend to propose to her in order to have that experience before she passed. She was such a strong fighter and didn’t want any one to know the pain she was going through. Makes you realize you have to look at each day in a positive attitude and see how lucky you truly are to still be alive. Here is a link our local news station wrote about her.