I do not know how to be strong right now, ever since learning that the cancer has spread.
I’ve been walking in a dazed and staggered mental state.
I am struggling to accept yet another fight. The only thing I do know is that when I look at the facts – Stage III cancer n 2013, Stage IV in 2016, and today in advanced Stage IV – my life, with all its desires, hopes, and aspirations, seems to be coming to a close.
But someone would say, “Enough Alex, you’re going to beat this!” Despite their good intentions behind these words, these types of statements are easy to say for someone who has yet to face their own mortality. I do not have that luxury. I cannot just sit on the side and watch, such as a spectator who observes two pugilists exchange a rhythm of punches in a boxing match. A spectator can see the exchange of punches, but they do not intimately know the sharp sting of a well-landed jab or how the sweat burns a swollen eye. Nevertheless, I don't hold those words against them. How would anyone understand a life with cancer if they have not faced the fire themselves?
But despite feeling dazed and dumbfounded at this time, I do know this: I will fight for my love. I will fight for the one person who made me into a better man. Who saw something more in me than I could ever see in myself. She is the one right now that will keep me going. How can I stop fighting while she chooses to stand alongside me during this time? If I cannot fight for me right now, then I must fight for her! If I cannot fight for me...or for her...then maybe this precious life should be taken away from me.
Someone recently told me, “Find your narrative in this trial.” I must admit that I’ve not yet found my narrative footing at this beginning of this third round. But I do know this. As a former boxer, when you’re against the ropes, you just have to keep your elbows tucked against your side, fists up to protect your face, and wait for that moment to fight your way off the ropes.
And if this is my last round, then I will make this cancer bleed and hurt before it beats me. And, for that matter, if hell gets in the way, then I just might have to break it into bits as well.
I am not feeling strong right now, but I will fight. Because, if a man does not fight for his loved ones, well, then maybe he should join that spectator outside the ring and watch.