I have Instagram to Thank for my MBC Soul Mate

How do you give thanks to a virtual platform so often ridiculed for its superficial tendencies?

This sounds like a love story and you know what? It is. My MBC diagnosis started in insurmountable fear and isolation. What the hell do I do with this? Family and friends of course lending unwavering support cannot be dismissed, but meeting someone ‘who’s just like you’ is unmistakably one of the best things to happen to me on this narrow and winding road.

It all started with a message from Marilyn that said she’d be in Toronto for a week or so and we should, of course, set up a coffee date. (Marilyn lives in Ottawa, which happens to be just a short train ride away from me in Toronto).

Well, we met and that was that! I loved her instantly. She ‘got’ me, which up until August of 2018, I hadn’t yet met someone that I connected with on such a deep level. You see, Marilyn and I are both 37, both from the east coast, and to make it even crazier…born one day apart in the same year. Here we were, two A-type Aquarius sisters with far too many similarities to ignore.

Coffee turned in to a concert the next night and an event the day after. We were hooked and agreed that this was special. That weekend inspired a connection for us both. (Yes Marilyn, I’m speaking on your behalf. You better love me as much as I love you! Ha)

MBC is like an island. I am often at a loss for words on how it truly feels to ‘be here.’ Having that person…you don’t need to explain, they just know. They truly KNOW. We both share the same vantage point to life and we both share a mindset in our treatments and lifestyle.

Sadly, this winter, we received another binding similarity with the loss of her beautiful mother to lung cancer. My mom passed when I was 17 of colon cancer and just like that, Marilyn joined me in the ‘motherless daughters’ club.

We are both amazing at picking up the pieces because we have to. This relationship is so special and I know that we were destined to meet. We chat almost every day on Facetime and plan visits every chance we get. We even went to Mexico together in February and can I just say…I LOVE travelling with her! She’s chill and fun and, well, it was awesome.

Can I also say, cancer may have been our connector but it doesn’t define our friendship. Yes, we chat a lot about it but we also chat a lot about our mutual shopping addictions and countless other shared joys. We’re both eternal optimists and we resonate on a human level outside of this journey we are both on.

See, cancer can be beautiful. It can bring people into your life that change you, inspire you, and that ultimately lift you up when everything falls to pieces. Connections, they are everything and I am truly blessed. I am so damn thankful we met that summer day last year.

By: Nadine Parsons

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