The kind you don’t die from

How do you tell your 13-year-old son you have cancer? I keep asking myself this question. There’s no way to shelter him from the truth, but is there a way to soften it, to not actually use that big scary C-word? Can I simply say there is something growing in mommy’s breast that the doctors need to take out?

Unfortunately I come from a long line of cancer patients. On my mother’s side alone, I quickly lose count as I try to tally up the lives this disease has taken from us. I will never forget when my grandfather was diagnosed. “I have a little cancer,” he said. A little. Three years later he was gone.

And yet, that’s not going to happen to me. I am not going to be a loss. I’m going to be okay. I may know very little about what I’m facing, I have so many unanswered questions, but I know what they found is small and that makes me believe it was found early. In terms of cancer, that’s a best case scenario, right? Maybe that’s what I tell my son. I have the good kind of cancer, the kind you don’t die from.


3 thoughts on “The kind you don’t die from

  1. Well you know I’ve had to deliver some bad news, but somehow this feels different. You have so much say in how this journey unfolds and he will see the network of support you all have. May he and you and James find comfort in that. He is an amazingly thoughtful boy.


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