Vox Populi*: A Daughter’s Thoughts On the 5th Anniversary of Her Mother’s Death From Ovarian Cancer
Today marks the fifth anniversary of your death. I’d like to say that I’m over it and that I don’t miss you like crazy, but you taught me not to lie. I’ve been teaching Little Man [Kia’s son] about lies, too. He nailed me with it yesterday, though. I told him I couldn’t dance with him any longer because I was dizzy and was going to puke. He replied, “Mommy are you actually going to puke?” I said, “No, not actually.” He indignantly retorted, “THAT’S A LIE!” He can be a jerk like that sometimes, but mostly he’s just a wonderful little bundle of awesomeness.
Mom, you would SO laugh at him. All the time.
I’d like to tell you that I’ve stopped reaching for the phone every time Little Man does something funny. I wish I could say that I don’t still think to myself, “I have to call mom and tell her this!” I still reach for that phone, mom.
I’d also like to say that I’m no longer bitter about your death and its timing. I’m still really pissed about it though. I mean, god, seriously? Having you ripped from our lives when Little Man was only 5 weeks old was hell. Pure hell. I know that there wouldn’t have been a good time to lose you, but I’m not sure I could have thought of a worse time. I’ve had so many parenting questions for you over the past 5 years and they’re mostly left unanswered.
I laid in bed around dawn today and pondered the torture you endured for five years, knowing that there was cancer eating away at your ovaries (and other organs near the end), knowing that no matter what the docs did, the best chance was to buy you a few extra months or even a year at best. The word “cure” never entered the picture. Ever. It wasn’t an option.
I thought this morning about the fight you put up; the brave shield of courage you wore, day after day, treatment after treatment, failed chemo after failed chemo. I don’t think I could do it, mom. You were and will always be my hero. For so many reasons that are so much more important than the final battle of your life. You were an every day hero.
I wish I had the chance to put it in words, this awe I have for your strength and endurance. I would have given up, had I been dealt half of what life threw at you. Of this, I am sure.
I wish I had told you that you were my hero. I wish I had the chance to curl up in your hospital bed with you and wrap you in my arms. I could have said so much and yet I chose a simple “I love you.” I can only hope that my actions in your last couple of years came within even a fraction of letting you know how I felt.
As for Little Man, he’s growing like a weed. I’m pretty sure that he’ll be taller than I am by the time he’s seven. He’s a smart little fart, too. I know you’d be amused by the fact that he’s constantly reminding me of my own idiocy. I also know you’d find it hilarious that he’s got my temper. And my pissy attitude. Oh, and my sense of entitlement. I believe I’m entitled to my sense of entitlement, though.
Mom, you’re missed. You’re loved. You’re appreciated. You’re always going to be the kindest, most generous person I’ve ever known.
***For my mom’s story, please visit Mommy Vents, here. I did a guest post [entitled “Whisper My Ass”] in September of 2008, in honour of Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month. Please, read my mom’s story.
Libby’s H*O*P*E*™: We would like to thank Kia for allowing us to publish her touching letter to her mom as our inaugural Vox Populi feature. We encourage our readers to view Kia’s September 2008 guest post at the Mommy Vents weblog, which is entitled Whisper My Ass. Kia’s guest post addresses the importance of detecting the early warning signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer as well as the critical need for additional ovarian cancer research. Learn more about the early warning signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer.
*”Vox Populi,” a Latin phrase that means “voice of the people,” is a term often used in broadcast journalism to describe an interview of a “man on the street.” Each person is asked the same question with the aim of getting a variety of answers and opinions on a specific topic. Journalists usually approach a wide range of people to get varied answers from different points of view. The Vox Populi format is sometimes used for dramatic or comedic effect in other forms of media.
In the spirit of Vox Populi, Libby’s H*O*P*E*™ searches online for original pieces of writing created by ovarian cancer survivors, survivors’ family members, cancer advocates, journalists, and health care professionals, which address one or more aspects of ovarian cancer within the context of daily life. The written pieces that we discover run the gamut; sometimes poignant, sometimes educational, sometimes touching, sometimes comedic, but always honest. The written piece may be an essay, editorial, poem, letter, or story about a loved one. In all cases, we have received permission from the writer to publish his or her written piece as a Libby’s H*O*P*E* Vox Populi weblog post.
It is our hope that the monthly Vox Populi feature will allow readers to obtain, in some small way, a better understanding of how ovarian cancer impacts the life of a woman diagnosed with the disease and her family. We invite all readers to submit, or bring to our attention, original written pieces suitable for publication as monthly Vox Populi features.