Luke and I met when he was starting his masters program in Boston and I was finishing up my bachelor’s degree in Rhode Island. This was the closest the two of us have ever been. Since then I have been in Maine and he has been in Canada. Distance has always been hard but when you love someone that much, it’s worth it. Currently I am on clinical rotations for pharmacy school that have been taking me all over the country and I am currently in the Washington DC area.
The week after I moved to DC for my rotation, Luke went to the hospital in excruciating pain. He is the type that never seeks out medical care so I knew something was wrong and took the next flight out to be with him. I helped him through the weekend but then I had to fly home and go back to work. His blood tests in the hospital had come back a little off so they asked him to follow up with a hematologist. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to stay for the follow up, and that evening he got the diagnosis.
Hearing the diagnosis of Cancer brings so many emotions: fear, anxiety, uncertainty, depression, and so on. Hearing that and being completely alone amplifies those emotions. Luke was completely alone when he got the diagnosis and I was completely alone when he told me.
Since then Luke has been nothing but positive even on his worst days. His family is now with him and helping him out. His colleagues and friends have been to visit. Everyone is sending out positive vibes, prayers, thoughts, and support.
Where does this leave me?
I am still in DC. I have two weeks left of my rotation here and time seems to have slowed. I feel completely alone. I have family and friends who text to check in on me, and ask about Luke, and support us in so many ways, but being alone can really make things difficult.
I am not there to help him when he isn’t feeling well from side effects. I am not there to ask questions or to advocate for him. I am not there to be an emotional support. I am not there to help his family as they try to help us. I am not there to learn about all of his treatments. I’m not there to learn about what our future looks like. I am not there when he needs me.
Simply put, I am not there; I am here and I have never felt so far away.