I haven't cried for awhile. Back when doctors first found my cancer, more than a year and half ago, I cried frequently. Later in the year, after I'd been through chemo and radiation and surgery and catastrophic weight loss and side effects, I would sometimes wake in the night and sob in my wife's arms, "I don't want to die."
I still don't, and I still have cancer. I'm still taking chemotherapy every two weeks, lying in bed for a couple of days and throwing up. But it has become a grinding routine, a long, protracted war against my body's own mutant cells, rather than a fierce battle.
I wish I cried more. I'm not holding it back. When it comes, crying is a great relief. I feel alive.
But I think I'm a bit numb to the threat of death now—I could still die soon, but it seems less likely, since my medical team and I seem to be fighting the disease decently, and I feel pretty well most of the time. My family and I talk about the future, and such talk no longer seems hollow.
I also laugh, especially with my kids, and my wife, and my band. I played another show with them this afternoon, and one thing I enjoy best about it is that pretty much every show, I laugh uncontrollably at least once about something.
It's true that I'm more sentimental now, and get misty-eyed at times when I might previously have been stoic or cynical. Sometimes it's just when I look at my daughters. Sometimes it's when I see pictures from Mars. Sometimes it's when I'm writing a blog post.