Are you saying this? If so, STOP it.

October 10, 2017

 

I don't think we always know what to say when someone passes away, so we word vomit whatever comes to mind to make ourselves feel better or we repeat phrases we hear or have read somewhere. 

 

OMG - - I am totally guilty! 

 

I mean, but what are we supposed to do?  There is no book that says what's appropriate to say when someone passes away.  Or if there is, I don't know about it.  I mean, and if there was, it would be kinda weird...I think. 

 

The truth is, nine times out of ten, people will say the wrong thing.  Because we are all different.  We have different needs.  We grieve differently. What one person needs to hear may not always be what another person wants to hear.

 

This is not a post of fluffy things to say or even a post of horror stories quoting awful things people have actually said.  This is totally a PSA from many within the {k}ancer community for ONE thing not to say about another who has passed from complications with {k}ancer!  

 

This is a post BEGGING for change!   

 

"______________, lost his/her battle with cancer" is not an ok phrase to use and here is why....

 

Let's look briefly at a few meanings for the words/phrases:  to lose or lost...

 

- to give up

- to suffer defeat or fail to win 

- to depreciate in effectiveness

- not used to good purpose, as opportunities, time, or labor; wasted 

- destroyed or ruined

- ending in or attended with defeat

- something that someone has failed to win

 

We know that's not what you meant!!  But it is what many of us hear.  And when you truly look at what is being said, it is as if the person who passed away didn't try hard enough.  Like they gave up!  Being in the {k}ancer community, I am definitely more sensitive to certain things, like this. 

 

To quote the late Stuart Scott, "When you die, that 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."

 

I am also reminded of this quote often...  

 

 

{K}ancer totally sucks.  It is almost always is an interruption to our lives. And it robs so many of joy, dignity, health... It robs us of our friends; our family. 

 

We aren't trying to write in a law or chastise you....just asking you to choose your words a little differently.  Because I can just about guarantee that no person living with or battling {k}ancer wants to let the disease win. 

 

And if we die as a result of complications with {k}ancer, we are not defeated. 

 

We showed up.  We fought hard.  And we let go when it was time to move on.

 

Will you join me in the commitment to re-think using the phrase:  "______________, lost his/her battle with cancer"  The disease simply doesn't deserve the credit nor the power.

 

 

 

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