“Too much reality is not what people want” – Woody Allen, Stardust Memories
Recent Cancer Victims
Richard Dawson (Actor/Host) – June 2 (Age 79) – Esophageal cancer
LaRoy Ellis (Basketball Player) – June 2 (Age 72) – Cancer
Kathryn Joosten (Actress) – June 2 (Age 72) – Lung cancer
John Fox (Comedian) – May 30 (Age 55) – Colon cancer
Jack Twyman (Basketball Player) – May 30 (Age 78) – Blood cancer
Cassandra Jardine (Journalist) – May 29 (Age 57) – Lung cancer
Kathi Kamen Goldmark (Writer) – May 24 (Age 63) – Cancer
Kuly Ral (Musician) – May 23 (Age 35) – Cancer
Sir Derek Wanless (British Policy Advisor) – May 22 (Age 64) – Pancreatic cancer
Robin Gibb (Musician) – May 20 (Age 62) – Colon and Liver cancer
Muriel Cerf (French writer) – May 19 (Age 61) – Cancer
Peter Jones (Drummer – Crowded House) – May 18 (Age 49) – Brain cancer
Gideon Ezra (Israeli politician) – May 17 (Age 74) – Lung cancer
Ron Shock (American stand-up comedian) – May 17 (Age 69) – Urethral cancer
Donna Summer (Singer/Songwriter) – May 17 (Age 63) – Lung cancer
Patricia Aakhus (Irish novelist) – May 16 (Age 59) – Cancer
Tatsuya Yoshimura (Japanese author) – May 14 (Age 60) – Stomach cancer
Ken Selby (American Businessman) – May 12 (Age 76) – Lung cancer
Kōichi Nakamoto (Japanese politician) – May 10 (Age 75) – Liver cancer
Stacy Robinson (American Football Player) – May 8 (Age 50) – Cancer
Jerry McMorris (American baseball executive (Colorado Rockies)) – May 8 (Age 71) – Pancreatic cancer
Dennis E. Fitch (American pilot) – May 7 (Age 69) – Brain cancer
Cancer is upon us
The tragedy isn’t death, it is being cheated out of a full life. Shortly after my birthday in late February, I received a very emotional call that a close friend was diagnosed with Stage 4 spinal and brain cancer. A one time survivor of breast cancer, this spirited soul was determined to win once again.
Yesterday the news came that it has spread to vital organs and now the clock has begun on the end of a young life. Stricken with cancer and coming to terms with the surreal inevitability of her death, we are all facing mortality through her eyes.
How do you say goodbye when you know how soon a life will end? How do you come to terms with family, friends, regrets, legacy and the pain that will remain with you until the very end? One cannot even imagine the thoughts running through her head morning, day and night. All we can do is be there, create some level of normalcy and try to hold in the emotions for her.
It is fascinating to observe the behavior and belief system that surrounds everything that is near her and other terminal patients. Faith rears its head high and proud, hatred succumbs at moments, fear fills the room with its prowess and hope lingers in the event that rare miracle sheds its light. It is a euphoric time when every possible human emotion is revealed. Because of that, it is a time that most cannot deal with or even comprehend until the moment it hits home.
I have spent countless hours at her home and in and out of hospital rooms along with her family and friends to give her all the attention, warmth and comfort she can muster. It is so difficult for her to move and just as difficult to watch her scream in pain. With every moment, the cancer cells forming in her bones are intensifying this pain to levels I can’t imagine in my wildest dreams.
Days are longer.
Thoughts are deeper.
Personal issues are put aside and the focus is put on one person.
This is a time that tests the human will. The will to survive, the will to curtail emotion and the will to give all of you heart to the person that is looking death right in the eye.
Are we losing the battle to cancer?
All talk about is about technology, innovation, advancement, automation but what about the dangers.
Musicians, athletes, writers, laborers, office workers all dying.
Do we need studies to see that a cell phone has radiation, preservatives have chemicals, microwaves send radiation into our food, speakers, MP3, cars, cigarettes and so much more. So much more that there is no point in going on.
We have the ability to win the fight or at least put up a fight but we don’t.
Through our own vices, addictions and greed we want to be put in the hands of the enabling devices that are making us susceptible to early death. But why? I don’t know. I don’t even begin to know.
All I know is that for the next few months, I am going to watch a scared friend count her last moments on earth.
When does it stop or are we in for a far worse future?
I love my friend. I don’t blame anyone. Not her, not a higher being, not society, not technology, not medicine. At this point, there is no room for blame, there is only room for healing. The greatest healing power is love. Being there for her for hours a day and telling her I love her is all I can do right now.
One thought on “Are we losing the battle to Cancer?”
Thank you for sharing so beautifully and openly! I am in the midst of a 30 day Gratitude Challenge and am grateful that my mother came through uterine cancer as well as she did. Fingers continually crossed until we hit the 5 year mark. My mother in law and a friend were not so lucky…thank you again!