If We Were Having Coffee… 4th June
If we were having coffee, I would thank you for taking the time to meet me here over a cup of coffee. I hope you had a relaxed weekend and the week ahead is looking great for you.
If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that after blogging every day all through April, I wanted to give myself a break for a few days in May. But a well deserved week long break extended to a month. No, I was not lazing around but I got sucked into a giant chaotic tornado. Some aspects of this chaos were amazing, some of it were challenging and a part of the chaos was depressing and utterly frustrating. Guess that’s what life is all about. It isn’t always a smooth sailing but we have to readjust our sails and move ahead.
If we were having coffee, I’d share that I lost a colleague last week. She had cancer. She was in her early 50s and was so vivacious and charming. Her death truly saddened me. As you can see that I haven’t mentioned here that ‘she had lost her battle with cancer’. There’s a reason behind it.
When I shared this sad news with my friend in these very words, her question made me re-think. She asked me, “Did she not try hard enough?” I said, “She did. She was strong and faced all the pains and struggles with a smile, in fact her courage was truly awe-inspiring. She was a wellness instructor and worked despite the challenges and helped people heal and de-stress.” And as I said that, I realized how wrong I was.
As we got talking, I figured that when we say someone has ‘lost her battle with cancer’, we are actually demeaning them as well as their family. Dying from cancer does not make someone a loser.
Using the terms like battle or war with reference to cancer implies that if a patient fights hard enough, and/or long enough, he or she will be able to make their tumor go away and win the war. We know that the journey with cancer is difficult and tumultuous which requires a lot of patience, courage and tolerance. In the course of this journey, if cancer patient dies, his dying should not be viewed as being defeated.
When you die, it does not mean that you lose to cancer. You beat cancer by how you live, why you live, and in the manner in which you live. – Stuart Scott
Thank you A for making me realize that I should remember my colleague as victor in life and not a loser in death. And that we should stop letting the cancer appear to be the winner. What do you think about this?
If we were having coffee, what would you talk about? Please share a snippet of your day/life with me below in the comments!
If we were having coffee, I’d thank you for joining me here today and hope we meet soon again. Until then…
Linking this to #MondayMusings
June 4, 2018 5:35 pm|
Hi Shilpa and all condolences on your friend’s death. And to all who knew and loved her. It sounds too soon. It sounds as if she lived her life bravely. May her dear soul rest in peace.
I also took a break after April … o my golly, it does take the stuffing out of one. Well, it did for me. No gain no pain as I recall guide saying as we traipsed up the mountain (Kilimanjaro, a long time ago).
On the up side, am leaving for Europe on Friday – the downside is that my visa is ‘still being processed’!!!
The winter chill is upon us … I hope I get on that flight to take me to warmer climes!
June 4, 2018 6:08 pm|
It’s been a long time I blogged, too. Well, Life had plans and made sure I followed them! I too was away from the blogging scene for a good three weeks, but have now resumed. And learnt a lesson. To live in the moment. To live in the Today, for the Today. The tomorrows will take care of themselves! And how many ever plans you make, the plans that Life has made for you are the ones you will have to obey. With a smile!
Hugs, dear girl!
June 4, 2018 6:27 pm|
I guess that it means that their suffering was as huge as fighting a battle. But I get where you are coming from. I am really sorry about your friend. News of any loss is saddening, be it someone we know or not.
June 4, 2018 6:40 pm|
If we were having coffee I would offer condolences and tell you about losing my “too young to die yet” friend to cancer. It was hard watching her go.
I would talk about my godson and that he visiting for a week. He is a good traveler and enjoys the RV lifestyle. I’m blessed he is in my life.
I would share my love for photography and maybe take your picture if it was ok. I hardly go anywhere with taking a few pictures. I’m working on a personal photo project, Lost in Paradise.
June 4, 2018 7:08 pm|
Hi dear, sorry for your loss. I am sure your friend was a great fighter and I agree that we should not use phrases like “she lost her battle”. This battle is not in our hands. I lost few of my family members and my best friend to cancer and I know how difficult it is. Winning or losing is not in our hands. Hugs to you.
June 4, 2018 7:52 pm|
I like your post (as well as I hate the words “losing the battle against cancer”). Sorry to hear bad news.
I feel curious to know what would be talking about if we met for coffee. But I guess we won’t never know! 🙂
June 4, 2018 7:53 pm|
That’s such a powerful message, Shilpa. Thank you for sharing that. Cancer is hard to beat so why should we even look at beating it. Isn’t it about accepting what has happened and then living?
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that it’s raining in Bangalore and I am loving the weather 🙂
I just wrapped a call and for the next 20 mins, I am reading posts 🙂 Glad to have you back!
June 4, 2018 9:14 pm|
I am very sorry to hear the news about your friend’s passing away. My heartfelt condolences. May she rest in peace.
June 5, 2018 7:51 am|
So sorry to hear about your friend, Shilpa. Life feels so unpredictable these days. If we were having coffee I’d tell you how much having a meniscus tear in my knee has derailed my life. Sigh!
June 5, 2018 9:14 am|
That was a lovely cup of coffee you shared Shilpa . It is really sad and disturbing to lose a friend/colleague – makes you realise how tenuous your life really is. I had a wonderful month of May….and hope that the rains in June bring cooler weather and happier times
June 5, 2018 10:08 am|
I thought it was I who had missed seeing your posts, Shilpa. I am very sorry about the loss of your friend. Cancer is terrible. And what a very valuable perspective shared by your other friend. I’ve never really thought about it, but it’s so true, isn’t it?
Semantics and how they change the way we think. So important.
Hoping you’re well otherwise. I noticed you mentioned things weren’t great. Hugs and hope June is better.
June 5, 2018 10:10 am|
You deserve the break Shilpa after your lovely posts for the AtoZ Challenge. Sometimes these breaks make us spring back and deliver lovely content. and I am sure June would see a month of lovely posts .
It is always sad to lose a friend. It is all the more sad to lose someone to cancer. I have seen my father struggle with the dreaded disease and its a tough fight indeed.
June 5, 2018 12:50 pm|
Shilpa, so sad to hear about your friend. 50 is no age to die when we are just settling in after the major battles of our lives. I like that you are thinking of her so positively as a winner.
As for my weekend, I just need 6 days in my weekend. I did not even turn the page of a book and I hate days like that.
June 5, 2018 2:55 pm|
Very sorry to hear about your friend. Heartfelt condolences. May she be at peace.
Sometimes we need a break just so we can regroup and come back with new ideas. Look forward to seeing your posts again.
June 5, 2018 4:17 pm|
If we were having coffee together, I would tell you I am sorry for your loss. To know that a dear one is not going to be there with you on your life’s journey is truly saddening. I am thankful to your friend who gave such a valuable lesson with respect to life and death. I wish you find the requisite strength.
June 5, 2018 8:24 pm|
I am with you on all counts, Shilpa. After the April A to Z, I had a hard time getting back into the swing of things with my blogging and I’m still trying to shuffle things around to make them all fit. And I agree with you on the “battle with cancer” outlook. Those who go through it, whether they end up passing away or living for many more years, have won the battle in all ways, because they have embraced a challenge to live their lives as best they can when dealing with the unknown. My condolences on the loss of your friend.
June 6, 2018 4:18 pm|
Please do accept my condolences! Cancer is draining and I don’t agree with the whole battle with any disease though. A life, if lived fully with dreams and aspirations, then I believe it is a life well spent, however small or big it is. It is our legacy that should matter. And I think your friend did leave a lasting legacy.
June 6, 2018 5:19 pm|
That was a lovely read. Sorry to hear about your loss. With the way you have mentioned about her, I am sure she lived her life spreading so much love and warmth.
June 6, 2018 7:06 pm|
So sorry to hear that, Shilpa. It’s always difficult to lose a friend that too to Cancer. I can totally understand.
You deserved this blogging break and congrats on your ebook. I’m sure it will be well-received.
June 6, 2018 11:12 pm|
A loss of a friend cannot be filled in by anything in this world. But we certainly try to keep ourselves busy and remember that person in loving memories.
June 7, 2018 12:28 am|
Sorry to hear of your friend. And i agree about the ‘lost’ misnomer with regard to cancer.
June 7, 2018 1:24 am|
Sorry to about your loss. I am sure, your friend was a fighter and she will always stay with you in your memories.
If we were having coffee together, I would have told you about my writing journey and it has changed me in many ways..
June 7, 2018 11:37 am|
Hasty hugs to u dear and knowing u r a strong person, I ll still pray that u get strength to fight this loss of urs.
But lovely read it was
June 7, 2018 1:00 pm|
Hai Shilpa, happy that you had a good much needed break after A To Z. And feeling so sorry about your friend A. May her soul rest in peace. I totally agree with you, that she has lived her life well rather than dieing to cancer. If I was having coffee with you, I would give a huge and tight hug, dear.
June 7, 2018 2:23 pm|
Sorry to know about the passing of someone close to you. May she rest in peace.
You brought in a fresh perspective to something we are getting to see more frequently – facing cancer.
While on side, it’s no longer a taboo to talk about cancer, people are also becoming increasingly brave and positive in the way they tackle this challenge, along with the the support of friends.
What we also learn is that life is not about problems. They were there. They are there. They will be there. Life is about how we tackle problems. Whether we won or lost is not about whether the problem remains or not, but how we faced it, how dealt with it, how we tackled it.
June 7, 2018 2:29 pm|
I’m so sorry for the passing of your friend! May she rest in peace!
Death is inevitable and no matter what we all will die! So it’s sad to say if someone lost the battle! Hard truth is that we all shall die!
June 7, 2018 4:35 pm|
It was sad to know that you lost your colleague over cancer. I can imagine because, I’m seeing my school friend struggling for recovery against Breast cancer, I’m seeing her moments and it makes me think so much wrt life and our aim.
June 7, 2018 4:52 pm|
It’s always hard to lose someone. I’ve never understood that phrase of losing the battle with cancer…we don’t say someone lost their battle with life when we die of natural causes! We die. We don’t lose battles with any illnesses. Hugs to you Shilpa
June 7, 2018 6:02 pm|
Its really hard to accept the fact. Death is something we cant avoid, but it was early for her. And I also believe a cancer patient needs so much mental strength and courage. She is a winner above everything. Touched by your post.
June 7, 2018 7:29 pm|
I’m sorry for your loss. Thinking of you and sending hugs. Thanks for your explanation on why we shouldn’t say “lost battle” or “lost fight.” I appreciate it.
June 7, 2018 8:59 pm|
If I we were having a coffee it would great to share so many things. Would share that sometimes break is essential and rejuvenating, how it made a difference to me as well. Losing someone close is difficult but as you said fighting is important, doing our best is what we can. It would share how small things bring in so much positivity.
June 8, 2018 12:33 pm|
Sorry to hear about your friend Shilpa and what you said makes so much sense. The victory is in facing the disease bravely and with a smile on one’s face. The end comes for all of us anyway.
June 8, 2018 12:47 pm|
Looks like all of us needed a writing break in May. We had earned it after April 🙂
I’m so sorry for the loss of your colleague. Death makes us look at life so differently and it somehow pushes us to work on the “What ifs”.
Welcome back, Shilpa! Looking forward to read you more.
June 8, 2018 1:53 pm|
Life is so uncertain and what matters is fighting well for there is no victory or loss. I feel sad for your loss. Shilpa and what matters you have kept her alive as expressed through your words.
June 8, 2018 5:54 pm|
I love your coffee posts, Shilpa. With a pinch of cinnamon perhaps? This one was very interesting and I was engrossed in your discussion about “battling” cancer. You are on to something there. A person dying from cancer is not at all a loser. On the contrary, they are so brave and teach us much about such valor. Thank you.
June 10, 2018 3:46 pm|
The loss as you note in your lovely writing is ours, not theirs. My brother is an oncologist and throughout his 30-plus years with his patients he has always marveled at their bravery and courage. When someone applauds him for treating them he says immediately: no, it is the patient who is the hero.
June 10, 2018 10:42 pm|
Nice cup of coffee you shared here Shilpa 🙂 What you said about “cancer” and “battle” can only be said by a compassionate and a sensitive person. I also lost my mother to the dreaded “C” in 2015. She dealt with the disease thrice in twelve years. And I too have somehow never used the “battled” . Though I never pondered over the reason, and infact never noticed my not using the word; I think the reasons must have been the same as yours.
A great post.
June 17, 2018 4:32 am|
awesome beautiful magic of wordings
June 18, 2018 12:35 pm|
What a thought provoking and great idea to write a blog post.
If we were having a coffee I’d just relax on my chair and enjoy the music with the aroma of coffee touching my nose..
July 29, 2019 8:26 pm|
nice article i loved it,,thank you