Sweet are the uses of adversity

uses of adversity


I am ailing. This is a shame. But there’s no reason I can’t get some benefit from it.

Once in a while, when talking to people, I just touch the side of my neck (where my tumor is) with people who know about my illness, and they become much more agreeable right away.

This is awful of me, I know. But what would a bad thing like cancer be without some positive side?

People are afraid of illness generally. A lot of people are unfamiliar with cancer altogether. One of my coworkers asked me the other day: “What would happen if you didn’t do any treatment at all?” (I had to explain to him that cancer is a death sentence if not treated; mine would probably metastasize to my jawbone and lungs, and I would die a very painful death within a few years at most. His jaw dropped, and his eyes were like saucers. He obviously had no idea it was that bad. Apparently he thought that cancer was like a bad cold – nasty, but you get over it eventually.)

People at work (who know about my condition) treat me with respect, for the most part. I don’t deserve it – I’m a horrible person in general – but then again, I’ve been in the office for over twenty-five years, and I deserve respect for my seniority if not for anything else. If it takes the realization that I’m seriously ill to make them pay attention, then so be it.

I love being treated seriously.


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About Loren Williams
Gay, partnered, living in Providence, working at a local university. Loves: books, movies, TV. Comments and recriminations can be sent to futureworld@cox.net.

2 Responses to Sweet are the uses of adversity

  1. My grandma used to put on a great show on the phone. She’d be going along pretty energetically doing whatever, and the phone would ring and she’d answer with a very feeble voice. This only happened in later years when she really did need some sympathy as she truly did have physical problems. It worked!

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