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The Ties That Bind


Yesterday I went to my local mall to run a few errands for work. A new store opened and I wanted to do a bit of poking around for Spring 19 development plus check out some market trends and also some competition. As I walked out of the last store, jotting notes in my phone I could hear loud music and raised my head a bit as I rounded the corner. There they were, the pillars of pink balloons. The first fuck was uttered quietly. As I got closer I saw the 'party-like' atmosphere. A radio station, pink swag bags, pink coupons, pink race forms, pink scarves, pink pens etc. The second fuck was a bit louder. Now, I loves me a good uplifting event but I knew better. I felt it in my bones, or in my bra, or what have you. I investigated further and spotted, on each banner and every form, the stupid pink ribbon slightly askew with the little dot atop like a cherry on a sundae.

Wonderful.

As I expected it's a Komen sponsored event. My stomach lurched. It was the last day of September. I wasn't prepared for the pink assault yet. I still had another day of 'just fall' to enjoy before the onslaught.

If you know me well then you know I never cry about my situation or breast cancer in general. My feelings of loss have calloused over and hardened into angry ball wrapped in snark and sarcasm. I tried to soldier on but I couldn't because I knew somewhere in the crowd was the woman who was just diagnosed surrounded by pink promises of a cure. In that crowd also was the woman who'd just found out she was metastatic and if she wasn't screaming from the rooftops about the insidious lies being told then she still believed them herself. Perhaps there was a woman in the crowd that has yet to find out her cancer has returned? It was thinking of her that brought the tears. I quickly lowered my sunglasses from the top of my head to mask the crushing the pain and dismay I suddenly felt. Fuck, I yelled louder, which stopped my husband in his tracks.

"You okay?"

"No"

"Too much?"

"It's the fucking lies. I can't deal with the lies today. It's not pretty, it's not easy, it's not the good cancer and my friends are still dying! What happens when it's me? When it's my turn."

"Okay, let's go. You saw what you needed to see for work. Let's grab something to eat on the way home away from all this. I know you're upset but you can't change the world. I know you want to but you can't. All you can do is use your platform for others to learn from."

"I need to be president, then all this nonsense will change. In fact, a lot of stupid stuff in this world would change."

"Yes, Jenn, it would, and it will. Someday. Just not today."

We walked out of the mall to our car. My husband saying anything and everything to get my mind off Komen and ribbons and profound disappointments. I kept my head down and my sunglasses on. I wiped away the tears streaming out of my eyes. My heart hurts for my metastatic friends, they deserve so much more. My brain hurts from too much thinking about how to change the narrative and who to get in front of. My joints ache and scream from the AI I take every day with no end in sight. I'm mad, it's not easy and I let it get to me.

It's October. Welcome to Stupidfuckingcancer, the 2017 edition.

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