So often in life we are faced with difficult situations. Most of them we overcome, some of them set us back and a few of them almost ruin us. But with each heart breaking, soul shattering, life changing event we push forward. On Saturday, we got the news that my best friends husband was diagnosed with cancer. A man in his twenties diagnosed with a disease that devastated their family and friends. After a long week of waiting for those results, my stomach sank when I saw her text message. You never really think that tragedy will strike in your circle. My group of friends on the other hand has faced some pretty serious tragedies over our 16 year friendship and yet again one of us will battle through something so awful that it’s hard to put into words. My friend’s husband is a man you can only dream that your best friend will find. When I gave my maid of honor speech at her wedding I had little flashes of their future as I read the words that came so easy to me when I wrote them. A specific part stands out now… “A girl can only hope that her best friend finds a man that puts her first, treats her like the amazing woman she is and values everything they have together. I know that Joey is that man for Michelle. I admire him for choosing such a spectacular woman to live his life with. And I am so proud of her for finding someone who is just as spectacular.” And now, just 7 months after this amazing day, this spectacular couple will face the biggest challenge of their lives. They will have to fight cancer together and although he is the one diagnosed, she will fight just as hard until he’s cured.
I’m an optimist and I think he is too. He will give everything he has to beat this and continue being the amazing father, husband, son, brother and friend that he is now. This moment in their lives will not define them but it will strengthen them. There is no other option but to get through it and when that happens, the appreciation for life and love will be greater than ever.
He couldn’t have a more perfect person by his side as he goes to war against cancer. She is the one you want in your corner and the one whose experience and strength will prove imperative. She will stand when he can’t, smile when he needs a reminder of how important it is to fight and she will love him more and more each day so that he never feels like giving up.
With their wonderful families and the friends that he has had his whole life, this tragic situation will soon only be a memory of a tragic situation. This will be a chapter in the beginning of their book. A chapter followed by so many more that it will eventually be a story told to their grandkids about how this strong man defeated cancer and everything that came with it.
It hits so close to home for too many people and although they didn’t expect it, they will rise to the challenge in order to defeat it.
I pray for them and for everyone else fighting this same fight.