It’s a word that fills me with dread. Brings up images of hospitals, sick and weak people, and tears. Lots of tears. In ’93 my cousin died after years of fighting Leukemia. He was 10 I believe. I wasn’t close to him. But the knowledge rattled me to my core. I was 14. When I was around 19 or so I found out my father’s mother had fought a bout of breast cancer. Early  detection saved her life. A year after that, my mother’s mother did a round of radiation therapy and removal of a tumor. In 2002 My grandfather was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer (I don’t know the actual diagnosis, or what type of cancer it was). Within six months he was gone. In 2008 I discovered a growth near my right nipple. It was removed and biopsied. Benign. But I was told I needed to watch, be careful pay attention to my body. With both my grandmothers having fought (and won) battles against breast cancer, it would not be unsurprising if I too wind up battling for my life against it.

Not today.

Not me.


I have been following Jay Lake‘s blog for years. Quietly watching his battle with cancer. I comment, a hug here or there. But I don’t know the man, though my heart hurts for him and his family. His words from his latest blog sink deep:

I cannot cheat death, but I can cheat the terror of the disease a little by easing it for others.


Mother Hen, the dear lady fighting brain cancer as we speak, I know her. I talk to her. Almost daily. She is a fixture in my life. In the lives of so many. I adore her. Absolutely adore her. She is keeping upbeat and positive. Inspiring, it fills me with cheer, and sadness. I want her around a few more years. I want her to meet my kids.

I find myself floundering.

What do I say? What CAN I say?

{{hugs}} seems to be about it.

But it doesn’t feel like it’s enough. It never feels like it’s enough.

I just hope it will do.

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