He was a ghost of the person he was before. The last time I saw him, his belly rotund and his laugh boisterous, I found myself frustrated by his constant fighting of me. He fought me because, unlike his disease, I was present and palpable with a face to place on his struggle. He tired me.
Now, his hollowness and tiredness made me long for the fight. "Fight me", I pleaded inwardly, "fight what is happening to you!" The skeletal frame he now pushed around could not support the weight of hoping. I complimented his newly growing, greying beard and his laugh and his cheeks were sallow and sunken. I hated what had happened to him. I hated him because I could not help him, and his lack of desperation made me feel desperate. Sometimes you see what terrifies you most in life mirrored in the face of a person, and their mere existence forces you to confront the demon within your own self.
But how can I help someone when I can barely help myself?