One of the great fears of yoking your love to another human is that all humans are fragile, and get sick and die. Even the thought of a loved one suffering through illness, especially cancer, can be overwhelming, and if you have to actually face it, it can be devastating. If you’ve experienced it, you can relate to this couple. If you fear such a struggle, they can inspire you.
Thomas & Nadine, a Global Glue Project couple, share in this video a heartbreaking and beautiful moment while talking about his two-time battle with cancer. It’s a moment that will bring tears to your eyes, especially if you have ever had to come to grips with the loss of a loved one. And if you have not had to face a dreaded illness in the person you love, watch the clip simply because their love for each other is infectious and inspiring, and it will likely leave you with newfound appreciation for your partner.
Nadine shares, “The thought of not having him…before that I always treasured him and loved him and valued what we have, but after he had cancer the first time, it just became deeper—that sense of: I want him as long as I can have him, and as long as he’s around I want to spend as much time as I have, and we have together—even if we’re just sitting in a room, or driving in a car, running errands together, it doesn’t matter—I love this man, I can’t imagine life without him, he means everything to me.”
Thomas’ beautiful reply: “Every once in awhile we’ll be laying in bed and Nadine will say to me: ‘Why do you love me?’ I said, ‘All those hours of chemotherapy you sat with me, among hundreds of reasons, that’s one of the reasons why I love you, you were there, you were always there, you’ve constantly been there—thank you.”
Don’t ever underestimate the power of love and gratitude for another human being, and how much of an impact simply being there can have. As they so eloquently point out, there is a closeness that only comes from spending years with one person, and value in knowing someone well enough who is capable of finishing your sentences. Simply being present is at the very heart of a relationship, and the pleasure that comes from spending time with a partner reminds us why we chose that person in the first place.
Simply being there and sharing quiet moments is a gift. I have never faced a serious illness in a partner, but I was at home with my father for the 6 months that he was dying in hospice care. While I was ‘simply there,’ I went through periods of feeling trapped and I wanted the freedom to live my life, but once he was gone, I valued those moments of simply ‘being there’ and would have done anything to get those moments back. I envy couples such as Thomas and Nadine, who have the opportunity to feel the loss, but then experience renewed health and the opportunity to live day-to-day in gratitude, knowing that our time here on earth is short, and the best we can do, is to love more.