I never really realized how tall my brother is or that he could actually be comforting until he took my 5 ft. mother in his arms yesterday to keep her from completely dissolving in the sadness that overtook her.

Maybe he’s not such a little brother afterall.

It is difficult to adjust to this new role – that of being caretakers for the ones who took care of us.

How to Ruin a Life

The word cancer is like an anvil. It is weighty and dark, a tunnel with no light at the end. It falls out of the atmosphere and pounds me Β into the ground with one swift stroke. It is deafening and any other word issued from the moving mouth is a silenced by a jet engine roar.

I am still standing, but I feel like I have just crumpled into my body like a deflated helium balloon.Β 

The PET scan showed blah blah blah metabolic activity in blah blah blah chemotherapy on Tuesday blah blah blah

The PET scan showed Β the PET scan showed Β the PET scan


Crumpling, crumpling, crumpling and tears and wailing and pounding of fists.

In being a healthcare provider, I almost forgot what it was like on the other side – the waiting and the watching and not-knowing. The remembering is worse than anything.

I’m still standing, still hearing the jet engine roar and watching the moving mouth and nodding.