Living As A Cancer Survivor: Saying Goodbye to My Best Friend

Mark Everett Kelly
5 min readOct 15, 2020

It’s been over a month since my last entry, so it’s about time I started to post more consistently.

I’m certainly not alone in my desire to see 2020 end ASAP. Only 1991, when I spent 10 of 12 months in the hospital receiving or recovering from cancer treatment, was harder to experience.

The culmination of sadness occurred on October 9th. While I prepared for work, I checked on my dog of 15 years and best friend in the world. He struggled through Thursday, and I knew time was short, but it still didn’t prepare me for what came next.

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I held Sammy most of the previous night, wanting him to feel safe and loved. He slept next to me, but I woke up early to shower and barely noticed I hadn’t heard a peep from him in the last hour. When I laid down to say good morning to him, I didn’t see the familiar sight of his chest going up and down. I then touched his nose, which always gets him annoyed, but this time there was no response. He was gone.

I let out a scream of agony. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!

Nothing can prepare you for your worst nightmare coming true (me holding the dead body of my best friend). I can’t express how dire my emotions were seeing him lay there, motionless. I’m not ashamed to say I cried like a baby.