I never knew heartbreak was an actual thing. Not a physical thing anyway. I thought it was something people just said but over the past week, I have felt it. A pain in my chest. Real pain and a heavy heart. My uncle is dying. My uncle. My dad’s twin brother. My cousin’s dad. The man my Auntie has loved since she was 20. I feel like my heart has been stabbed and I’m not being dramatic. Maybe I’m lucky to never have felt heartbreak before considering I am 23 but it just hurts so much. Suddenly all those love songs and poems about heartbreak don’t seem so stupid and I finally get how much it hurts.
My uncle has cancer in more than one place. He only got diagnosed at the start of 2016 and before that, he was active and lively and careful about what he ate. He used to do swim marathons and loved rambling in the countryside. Over the past week, we have learnt that he only has a few weeks at the most when we thought he had years.
Last Saturday, my parents and I went to visit him. He was exactly how I had imagined him to look from what I had been told: slightly yellow, extremely skinny and visibly exhausted from the fight against this horrendous disease. Yet still, I was shocked by what I saw, somebody that I had always looked up to literally was now small and hard to hear. He no longer looked like somebody I knew. I don’t think you ever imagine your loved ones as anything ever than how you see them because why would you?
That was by far the worst day of my life so far. I watched my dad cry and my heart broke even more. My dad had tears falling from his eyes and down his cheeks and wasn’t breathing like normal. I have never seen my dad cry before, I had never even thought that it could happen. Dad doesn’t cry. Daddy doesn’t cry. But he did. Of course my mum cried too and so did I. My uncle, the one who used to do loads of swimming and walking and used to be extremely fit not only
Sit up in a chair but couldn’t open a bottle of water. This stunned me. I can’t believe that somebody so strong and somebody I can remember when I was younger to open things suddenly couldn’t. I couldn’t believe that someone who was once strong had had it taken away almost suddenly. I feel utterly powerless, I always like to go in to situations and think I can fix them or make them
Better but this I can’t. I can’t change the fact this terminal disease wil kill my uncle. I can’t change the fact that this will in turn upset my dad or that my
Cousins will lose
Their father. And that almost makes me feel
Hopeless. But after thinking, I have realised I could in this situation wonder what the point of life is of a disease can just come and take it just like that. Or
I can use it to
Push me forward, to make myself the best version of me I can be. I can use it to realise our time here may be too short so we have to do our best to make the world a better place and be the best we can. I won’t be a speechwriter changing the world with my words for a few years yet but I can set plans for the future and actually make them happen. I can try and be the best daughter, sister, niece and cousin.
I’m going to use this to become powerful at something. To be better.
We don’t have forever but I’m
Going to make sure nothing is left unsaid. I’m going to use this powerless feeling and make sure that I put my power in to something I have got and can do.