Once upon a time there was a man and a woman who were in love. They got married and discovered a month later that they were going to be parents. It was the happiest day of their lives, even though the man was being deployed to Afghanistan that very day. For over five months they talked almost every day via phone or skype. They would talk about the baby and how big the woman's stomach and breast were growing. They talked about work and how much they missed each other, but mostly they talked about their future. They made so many plans for their soon to be family of three. Where they would be stationed, how many kids they would have, when they wanted to try for baby number two, and when would the man retire so that they could raise their children in Hawaii around family. The had many plans and dreams. The woman finally believed in Happily Ever After. Unfortunately, her belief was proven wrong. When she was 5 1/2 months pregnant she got a call from her husband, like she does everyday, but this conversation was much different. Life for the man and woman would never be the same. Why? It contained a word that the woman always feared. A word that has been so prevalent in her life. "Cancer"
While the man was in Afghanistan he had a cough that would not go away. Then he started getting nauseous all the time and started losing a lot of weight. After many visits to the clinic, with no results, they finally sent him to the military hospital in Germany, where they discovered a mass on his liver.After a biopsy, it was confirmed. The man had Fibrolamellar Hepatocellular Carcinoma. A primary liver cancer that affects mostly younger adults. The man was flown to San Diego for surgery and treatment and the woman took leave from work and flew out to be with him. Together they tried their hardest to beat this terrible disease. The woman, though pregnant and getting bigger by the day, took care of her husband as he got weaker. They eventually were able to fly home to Hawaii, where they would have the support of their family and friends, since the baby due date kept getting closer. The woman stayed positive and truly believed that everything would be okay. Then one day the man woke up incoherent. The nurse came over and told the woman it was time to start preparing for the worst. The man was dying. The woman was suppose to be preparing for life, the new life of her child. How was she suppose to prepare for the death of her husband at the same time. It took a week, but the doctor and nurses were able to clear the man's mind. The man and woman were able to talk about the future again, but it wasn't the future they initially planned. This time it was a future without the man. It was one the woman didn't want to think about but was force to. The one thing the man wanted to do before he died was to hold his baby girl. The doctors told the woman the only way to make that happen would be if she got induced ASAP. So the woman's doctors scheduled an induction and she went in to have her baby. The man, who was now confined to a bed, would be brought to the hospital later, when they knew labor was in full swing. But alas things again did not go as they planned. While in the hospital waiting to be induced the woman received news that her husband had passed away. The woman decides not to go through with the induction and returns home to say goodbye to the love of her life. A week later the woman delivered a baby girl, who looks exactly like her daddy.
The Valentine's Day before my husband was diagnosed, I sent him a video. I told him that, thanks to him, all my dreams where coming true. I found a great man and we were going to have a wonderful life together. I knew our life wouldn't be perfect. There were going to be some ups and downs but we loved each other enough and believed in our vows enough that we would be together forever. That we would live Happily Ever After. Now I lay in bed at night wondering "why?" Why don't I get my Happily Ever After? Why was he taken from me? Why was he taken from our daughter? Why didn't he get a chance to hold her? Why? Why? Why? It's been 13 months now since he died. These questions will never be answered. There is no answer. I thought I was going to have a fairy tale life, instead I am a 32 year old widow and a single mother of a one year old. This definitely was not in any of our plans.