Not Right

February 26, 2022


The five stages of grief are denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance.


I feel like we went through denial very quickly because, I’m sorry, but it’s “Schmidt or get off the pot.” Information was coming at us so quickly and decisions needed to be made, because your life literally depended on it. Luckily, we knew in our hearts we were in the right place with doctors we trusted.


Initially we kept telling ourselves we had caught your cancer early. We have also bargained for time. “If I can make it until…”


No Schmidt, Sherlock! That is not a stage! It is ALL-ENCOMPASSING.


Well, if you haven’t noticed from the tone of this letter, I AM THERE! I am so mad at cancer! It had no right coming into our lives and tearing us apart. It has no right forcing our children to experience losing their father as their first loss of a loved one. It’s not right that you will not be able to see your grandchildren. It is not right that we will not grow old together. It is not right that you will not be able to enjoy your retirement, fishing out on the peaceful lake. It is just not right!

I am not just angry for our family;

I am angry for all the families that have to deal with cancer. The two support groups I am in are heartbreaking. No family should have to go through this, and yet there are just too many. When I think of our little community, and all the tragedy that is taking place—not just cancer but accidents, suicides, strokes, heart attacks—the whole world just feels like it is grieving right now. I visualize the world with a huge breath sucked in because it hurts too much to let it out.

I hope I can get over this anger, because it is toxic! I do not want to live my life angry all the time, or depressed, for that matter. But right now, in this time and place, that is where I am. I am calling myself out.


No, not there yet. I will admit, it is going to take me some time to get to this point.

I’m sorry this letter is filled with so much outrage. You have always been my safe haven to “get it all out.” These letters are no different, and I hope my readers do not judge me for it. I am human, and humans have feelings. Those feelings are not all roses and today, I am just feeling the thorns on those roses.

I love you with all my heart –


Did this letter resonate with you? I would love to hear about it! 

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    1. Pat,
      Thank you. It is an honor that I have written what others and my family are feeling but not able to put into words.

    2. Oh the anger. I can so identify with that. I’m ashamed to say how bad my anger is but you truly find out who cares and who doesn’t. I’m thinking of you and praying for you. Thank you for expressing your feelings and helping others.

      1. Mary,
        Your words are true. Fortunately, we have been very blessed with all the support. Anger…how can you not when dealing with this devil! I am thinking of you as well. I hope I am helping others, that is my passion.

  1. So very sorry you and your family have had to suffer this loss! Your writing is beautiful!! Keep it up, share all the feels you need to share! Hugs coming from afar! And prayers, so many prayers, for comfort and strength!! With aching heart and much love, Brenda 💔😔🙏🏻😔🙏🏻💖

    1. Brenda,
      Thank you for the kind words. Yes, I have a lot more to say, so I am continuing to write. Thank you for the prayers, we feel them.

  2. I do not know you but have followed your journey as you have battled through your husband’s cancer diagnosis. I am so sorry the battle did not have a different ending.

    1. Peggy,
      I am so glad you are following our journey. It is not over as I have a lot more to say. I hope you will continue reading my letters to my husband. It means a great deal to all of us.

  3. I had my experience with cancer when I lost my dad. That however is how we feel life goes. You should not have to lose your husband this young with what you thought would have been your time for each other. Time does help heal. What I hold on to is seeing all of our loved oves again some day in a place that is supposed to be better than the life we are even in now. I have been thinking so much about your family and will continue to do so through your grief and your anger.

    1. Shelly,
      I am sorry you lost your father to cancer. Not right. Thank you for thinking of us in our sorrow.

  4. Nicole,
    As a health care worker, I have seen death many times. It is NEVER something a person gets used to. I admire your strength and words! Mitch was a very lucky man to have you and vise versa. What a truly powerful bond. This is written beautifully.

    1. Susan,
      Thank you for your kind words. Many days I do not feel strong, but I try my best. I was truly lucky to have had Mitch in my life. Many people do not get to share the love we had for each other. I have been one lucky lady even in my sorrow.

  5. Nicole you have put your feelings into words like no other! I have nothing but admiration for the strength and love you have shown through this difficult time. I so agree "CANCER SUCKS" To you, your family and friends we send our heartfelt thoughts and prayers 🙏💔🙏💔🙏

    1. Lori,
      Thank you for your kind words. The writing helps me cope and get it all out. My hope by sharing my writings is it will help even one person.

  6. You know the end is coming, before it comes you’ve already cried enough tears to start a stream. Not wanting to hear the word hospice as that is pretty much the end stop in this ‘cancer’ journey. When it does come death is close to a relief, relief for them for all the poking, prodding, needles and so many other things that have made the pain unbearable. I felt as if my husband was used as a cash register as he just went on Medicare. So many unnecessary tests, terribly expensive shots that were unhelpful to his type of cancer. A backbrace he never wore-I think you can guess where I wanted to put it! Yes Nicole anger is a normal feeling when you lose someone who completed you. Thank you for sharing your beautiful words. Hugs

    1. Connie,
      I am so sorry for your trials with your husband’s cancer. It just is not right that with all the advances made in cancer research, we still have way too many beautiful souls lost to this devestating illness. It is hard to wrap my head around the fact that Mitch didn’t even make it a year. Writing is a way for me to work through my emotions, I have so much more to say.

  7. Nicole, I met Mitch through the grocery store. He was always so helpful and kind. I lost my son in 2017 and my husband in 2018, both to cancer. I would recommend the support group, GriefShare. The program is wonderful for being able to get to acceptance of this awful disease and loss. Lean into God for comfort. May God bless you and your family.

    1. Debbie,
      I am so sorry for your losses. Just isn’t right! Yes, GriefShare is a great program. Thank you for reminding me of it. Thank you for reaching out to me.

  8. Sending you so much love and light through this time of sorrow. May you feel the love of your community and your sweet love, Mitch, wrapped around you and know that you are held.

  9. You seem so well prepared for this awful thing called grieving. I pray you travel through the stages and that He gives you strength should you stall. Always a prayer for you.

    1. Kathleen,
      I don’t feel prepared for grieving, but I do feel like I have been grieving (anticipitory grieving) since September when we were getting all the bad news. I continue to pray for strength to continue to grieve with grace and find the ability to find joy despite the grief.

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