There are moments in life when, even standing in a crowded room full of people laughing and talking, with a band playing “Uptown Funk” and everyone is dancing around you, everything falls into place. When you quickly (though it plays out in slow motion when looking back) scan the room and realize “everything is going to be ok. Better than ok.” That moment for me happened at the gala for David’s Dream and Believe Cancer Foundation on Friday night. Here’s why:
I haven’t posted in months. In terms of cancer and how it is currently affecting our life- I haven’t had a single word to say. I have a million others, but my thought was “I called this blog ‘a cancer moms life’ so I can’t just openly discuss anything and everything.” Here’s the truth- my husband and I are getting divorced. I literally just breathed a massive sigh of relief. At the end of the day, it’s really no one’s business, but I’ve felt like, having been in the public’s eye as a family, people almost should know. To make a very long story as short as possible- our marriage failed. We simply don’t work anymore as a couple. And after much back and forth, arguing and hurting one another in various ways- we are both at the same place I had hoped for from the start. To raise our children and coparent in a manner that is respectful of each other and that comes from a place of love and kindness, towards our children obviously, but for one another as well.
When David asked for us to attend this years gala, I embarrassingly told him of our impending divorce, thinking that in that moment, we would not be able to attend together as our fighting had reached its peak. Two weeks and while we made progress, I was still unsure if attending together would be a ‘good idea.’ But we did. We danced and we laughed. We cried during David’s speech as he mentioned that it was a year ago that he introduced Elena to the crowd, having just been diagnosed and that today she is cancer free. I was introduced to the generous and amazing family that, in the Spring, had sent me and Mario on a date night, covering not only our meal, but the cost of the babysitter for the night as well. I felt guilty meeting them- they had wanted our love to triumph during a ridiculously difficult time as parents and we failed at that. However, we are succeeding at being better people to one another, amazing parents to our girls and moving forward with love, respect and kindness. To this generous family I say this- your generosity played a role in getting us to this place. And for that, I am forever grateful, truly.
I met an amazing woman and fellow fierce cancer mom. Though her story is both very different and very much the same. She was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year while pregnant with her third child. Her baby Sam is absolutely adorable and melts my heart seeing her post pictures on Facebook. At one point, as we spoke and I mentioned how amazing I think she is and she shared similar sentiments towards me and the “I couldn’t imagine what you went through” it hit me that this woman and I have been in the same boat. When push comes to shove we have both questioned whether or not we would get to see our children grow. There is no greater fear as a mother and it’s a bond we unfortunately share, but one that has paved the start to what I hope to be a great friendship.
So all this had happened as the band started to play another song and I looked at Mario as the room was fading out around me and I asked him “Are we going to be ok?” And he knew I didn’t mean “can we fix things?” He smiled and peacefully replied “yeah- I really think we are!”
At one point I think both of us had wanted to blame cancer for the demise of our marriage. In reality it has given us the gift of loving our children so fiercely and wanting to do what is best for them. And that still means family days and shared birthdays. It means going as a solid unit to Disney in October. It means loving one another from a distance, knowing the two greatest gifts we have ever received wouldn’t have been possible without each other. And that’s worth everything.
P.S. both the girls are happy and healthy and amazing! Elena’s hair is growing back and her energy levels are exhausting (and I mean that in the happiest, most tired way possible!) Her laughter lights up my days and her determination is a force to be reckon with. Though, all things considered, I would expect nothing less from her. ☺️