Ethan Zohn's cancer has returned. For anyone who doesn't know he was the winner of Survivor years ago and one of the notable things about that is that not a single vote was cast against him to be voted out. Ever. That's pretty unheard of in the cutthroat world of Survivor. He must be quite a man.
Anyway, back to cancer. The thing about this disease is it doesn't matter how popular or nice you are. He was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma a couple of years ago and it went into remission and in September he found out it was back. I saw this picture of him and his girlfriend, Jenna, just before he ran the New York Marathon. I literally could not stop looking at it.
Now, I can't relate to the struggles that he is going through, but her - she's a different story. Everything that I have read about her, she loves him. And there is nothing more heartbreaking to see the man you love, who is larger than life as I'm sure he is to her, throw up in a bucket. To take a short walk and be winded. To crumble in front of you. I know, I've been there. And even though, I'm not them I know a little bit how that feels. I really wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. I look at this girl in this picture and she looks dazed, like the mack truck called cancer just backed up in her driveway and dumped out all its garbage on her doorstep.
Confession time: sometimes, during very dark times, I think I failed Sean and I think God took him early because of me. I could not do what she is doing. Ethan's cancer went away for 20 months. For 20 months. I imagine all kinds of plans were made, how jubilant they must have felt, how she might actually have taken a deep breath. I don't know that I could have waited for the other shoe to drop, to always feel like I had to look over my shoulder to see if cancer was catching up with us. I just don't know that I could have lived through that constant fear and waiting. Now I know that God's timetable doesn't revolve around me and Sean's life was written long before I came along. But, in the dark times - I think.
But, this girl. She's someone you want in your corner. If I met her today I would hug her so tight and I would tell her how hard I am praying for her. How at the lowest times of our lives, the ones who surround us the best - those are the ones.