Written By Chara A. 


A few months ago I received a call and someone at the other end of the phone said “We’ve got bad news. The cancer in his brain has spread, he will be operated on Tuesday but they are giving him very little chance of surviving the operation”. It was only seven days after the first signs appeared. Seven fucking days.

I had thought about cancer before, I volunteered in different anti-cancer charities, I have close friends who experienced it with a loved one, but I had never experienced it myself with someone close. And it sucks. Cancer is a hypocritical bastard who comes without any warnings and takes over someone’s life. And I knew it before -as we all do- but we never actually get to understand unless we experience it. But again, even knowing, you don’t ever really know how to handle it; as with all the terminal illnesses. You don’t know how to express your love and compassion, you are not sure what sort of support is appropriate.

Last week, I was attending a charity lunch and the speaker said “Raise your hand if you have ever known a person with a terminal illness”. And every single person in the audience raised their hands. And I sat there observing them; everyone had this joyless, sad expression because they all went back for a moment and recalled all those memories related to their loved ones who did not manage to win the unfair battle.

I bet you are reading this now and you are thinking of someone you know, right? And can I ask you something because I’m new at this and -as I said- the only thing I know is that it sucks? How the hell do you fight with all guilt and all the pain of not having had expressed yourself enough? How the hell, have people experienced this sort of loss and haven’t reconsidered their whole being? How can you know, that these sorts of illnesses are out there and still not be 100% genuine with everyone you have in front of you? Why would you let any thoughts haunt you, if you can make a positive impact in someone’s life even for a moment there?

I know adult life is tiring and sometimes; you are too tired to deal with anything, but unfortunately nowadays we get to familiarize ourselves with loss and terminal illnesses too early in our lives. And if there’s one thing we should get out of it, it’s that life, short as it is, doesn’t always give you or your loved ones a second chance. And whilst you embrace each moment, make sure you make your desirable impact on your loved ones or even a stranger’s life.

The next time you decide to be an absolute prick to someone, think about it twice. You never know what that person is going through and you never know what’s around the corner. Speak up your feelings, express your love and appreciation and don’t let a single thing go unsaid.

For our loved one who’s watching from above.

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