I dated this guy about 4 years ago. We broke up. Every now and then, I would routinely stalk check his Facebook account to see how he was doing. About a year ago, he wanted to meet up for dinner. He knew I was in a new relationship and I thought this was a ploy to Friday’s and Chill like we use to do when I was a wee-lad. I turned his invitation down, politely. A few months later, he sent me a friend request on social media. I originally accepted it—I was so in love that his interference was irrelevant. A couple days later, for no real reason in particular, I deleted it.
As the year went on, I’d check on his social media accounts—for no real reason in particular. I’d see his son’s birthday party post. ‘Cute Kid.’ I’d see he’s started a new job. ‘Congratulations!’ One day I checked and saw that he had cancer. I say it that way, without any eloquence or sappy introduction because—well, life be’s like that sometimes. Sometimes people get cancer. Sometimes people die. And we as humans deal with that.
I didn’t say anything to him because based on what I’d read, he’d had it for some time. When he asked me to dinner—he had it. When he sent me a friend request—he had it. So I thought, you know, maybe he was living with it.
Two weeks ago, he died.
I found out on social media.
As I read the numerous ‘R.I.P’ post, I expected the tears to fall. I waited for them to fall. And they never did. But that’s okay.
I further checked the page to see if I could attend the service. I’d met his family. The least I could do would be to attend the funeral and offer my condolences. I’d missed it.
Still no tears. I was okay with that. I don’t like funerals anyway.
I’m not some heartless bitch. I promise. We had fun. Our thing lasted about 4 years throughout my college matriculation. There were others. But I really liked this one. I thought I’d be his wife; as I did with every guy I met in college. I remember there was a time when we went to Philadelphia to visit his grandmother. I booked the bus tickets and we went on a Saturday to spend the day there shopping and exploring the city. At lunch, when the waiter asked about us, his grandmother said “this is my grandson and his girlfriend.”
“FRIEND!” he told his grandmother before the waiter could walk away. We’d been dating for 2 years at that point.
Then there was that time that his relationship—the one that he’d previously dumped me for—went to shit and he would call me all hours of the night—when she was away—to vent about how shitty the relationship was and how he wished we’d still been together. I would listen; but only because I felt vindicated.
The last time I actually saw him, he’d help install my air conditioner when my ass erroneously purchased an apartment with no AC but thousands of rats and roaches. I thanked him appropriately.
So you see, I didn’t hate the guy; and I don’t speak negatively about him—about our ‘relationship?’ Okay, yeah. I do. But of him personally, nah. Wasn’t all his fault how shit turned out. And it’s not my fault that now he’s died and I wasn’t there. Had things turned out okay with us; I’d be the one dressed in black at the funeral crying over his casket. Had things turned out the way I use to wish they’d turned out—I’d be the one having to explain to my son that his father passed away before he was old enough to understand what cancer was.
But God had other plans. And as a believer of God’s plans. We have to accept them as they are; for good or bad. For better or for worse. Because life just be’s like that sometimes.
Some takeaways in case your ex decides to up and die from cancer:
- THE WAY WE WERE –Remember how things were. Think fondly of the times you spent together; but remember they were an ex for a reason, no matter where the road leads.
- IT’S OKAY TO MOURN – “Man! We had fun! I fuckin’ loved that guy. This is fucked up!”
- IT’S OKAY TO NOT CARE – “God! He was a douche!”
- IT’S OKAY TO FEEL CONFUSED – “Should I cry?” But, I’m not sad…
- BUT IN THE END, IT’S ALWAYS FUCK CANCER –I don’t deal with death that well, but Cancer is a Fuckboy and the only takeaway from this should be to understand that the world lost a good guy to fucked up circumstances. We dated. It didn’t work out and sometime later, he died. Sometimes in life, some people get to be Beyonce’. Other’s get cancer. Life just be’s that way.