Being Strong While Shedding Tears

My sister, Rosie, is battling cancer.  She had some tremendous setbacks this week – I think it may have been one of her toughest yet.  Last night she told me something that broke my heart.  She said she tries to stay strong, but in the night, when no one is looking she cries.

We sit on the sidelines and watch the battle.  We are helpless.  We want to take away the pain but it is not within our power.  It hurts so bad to see someone you love hurting, but last night I think I understood for the first time what pressure she was feeling.

I know sometimes I cry alone.  Sometimes I don’t want others to see me.  I can only imagine how hard it must be to battle the biggest battle of your life and not be able to express how you are feeling.  I felt ashamed.

I understand all too well the value of laughter in this fight.  The value of positive thinking.  But if I can have a bad day and feel like I need a good cry, then my beloved sister deserves no less.

Rosie, I love you with all my heart.  I ask you to forgive me for always wanting you to be strong in this fight.  I will be here for you no matter what your mood, no matter what you need to say or how you need to say it.  Do not misunderstand.  I want to keep my sister with the sharp wit.  I want to hear you laugh.  This fight is not over.  You and I are NOT giving up.  But let’s be fair from now on.  Cry when you need to cry.  Laugh when you need to laugh.  Fight when you need to fight.  And know that above all things, you mean the world to me.

I love you with all my heart.


9 thoughts on “Being Strong While Shedding Tears

  1. Makes me feel pretty superficial having any complaints about getting old.
    We (especially me) really should be celebrating every second of our lives.
    Let me take a moment right now to celebrate our friendship! Thank you for being such a good and caring friend.

  2. Cancer is an enemy that everyone fights in their own way. My mother chose to wait it out and kept the strong front for many years as her body waged war. Ultimately, she lost – or won – depending on your point of view. I wondered then as I do now whether dying is like childbirth…nobody can understand unless they’ve been there, and nobody can do it for you. It was like moving – she gradually spent more time on the other side than she did with us, until finally it just made sense that she should go home. I love you all and think you & your sisters are much braver (and more articulate) than I.

  3. You have a tremendous heart and a beautiful way with words…
    You are giving Aunt Rosie the best gift you possibly can by being a safe place to fall. She needs a place to be strong and a place to fall apart. So do you.
    I love you both very much!

  4. I don’t even know what to say to this…..well said….sometimes the hardest part about loving someone is being willing to see them in all the shades of emotion God created for us to experience….who are we to keep others from experiencing them? You are a good sister…and I’m proud to call you my mother….

  5. Maggie,
    So hard to say the right thing. Sometimes, saying nothing at all……..just listening with love and support, can help that person. Wish there was something I could do for the whole family. It’s a very hard journey………just keep trying!!!!

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