A wedding ring attached to a ball and chain with the Myeloma ribbon on it

Married to Myeloma (A Poem)

Several years ago, I was single but still hopeful that I would find a life partner and possibly even get married again. Then came the myeloma diagnosis. The word ‘incurable’ felt like a ‘till death do us part’ pronouncement - an arranged marriage in which I had no say. I also felt it would greatly reduce the chances of finding the man of my dreams.

Now, years later and still single, I can find some humor in seeing myeloma as my inhospitable partner in a difficult marriage. As I began to write an article about this ‘marriage’, I realized it would be much more enjoyable (and challenging) as a poem. I hope you find it more fun to read as well.

 

Married to Myeloma

by Ramae Hamrin

Three years ago
I did not have a beau
(and was even quite happy that way),
when I met a man
who reached for my hand.
I tried to pull it away.

He asked me to dance.
I said, “Not a chance,”
But he wouldn’t take no for an answer.
“Please leave me alone.
I have pain in my bone,
and I’ve never been much of a dancer.”

I tried to escape
but fell over a gate
and fractured my upper left hip.
I lay on the floor
as he stood in the door,
watching me holler and yip.

I got up and away,
much to his dismay,
and happy to leave him behind.
But the very next week,
I let out a shriek
when I realized he was maligned.

And then on a day
in the month before May,
I had just gone under the knife.
I had no choice.
It was the oncologist’s voice
that pronounced us husband and wife.

Not even a ring,
just a pinch, poke, and sting,
and a plasmacytoma in my femur.
Those were the gifts
that started the rifts
with my new hubby, the schemer.

And so it began.
I looked at my man
and sniffed his sickly aroma.
I began to grieve.
I couldn’t believe
that I was married to myeloma.

It broke my heart.
Till death do us part.
He wasn’t the prince I wanted.
What had I done?
I had already begun
to see my marriage as haunted.

I felt so much doom.
Such a terrible groom,
he spent my hard-earned money.
He racked up the bills
and forced me to take pills.
Not once did I think he was funny.

He doesn’t read books.
He won’t learn to cook.
He only gets in the way.
He causes me pain
while he watches me strain
to just get through the day.

He wakes me at night,
but it’s no use to fight.
He pretends to be asleep.
He’s such a pain.
I try to explain
that his hurt is sharp and deep.

I would leave if I could.
It would feel so good
to leave the strain and strife.
But unless I’m mistaken,
I’m already taken,
and this marriage is for life.

If I found a nice man
and came up with a plan,
I would so happily stray.
But he makes it hard.
I’ll have to catch him off guard
if I want to sneak away.

Besides, he’s possessive
and sometimes aggressive.
Others don’t want to come near.
His threatening display
makes them stay far away,
and they do so out of fear.

Till death may us part,
but he won’t have my heart
no matter how long we’re united.
I will do my best
to feel happy and blessed,
though his love shall remain unrequited.

As bad as it’s been,
through the thick and the thin,
he has taught me a lot about life.
I’ve had to slow down
and take the long way around
to become a happier wife.

So I will endure
while I hope for a cure
and an official divorce diploma.
I’ll use humor to get through.
It’s what you have to do
when you’re married to myeloma.

 

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