Wednesday, November 4, 2009

A Family Affair

I'm not the only one in my family to have been dealt the cancer blow. Within one year of my diagnosis both my parents were to face their own challenges. My father was hit quick with emergency surgery to remove a tumorous kidney-he was lucky it had been caught before spreading to the other and four weeks later he was hiking a local north shore mountain. He never speaks of it but the memory of seeing him in so much pain has never left me. He has been the rock for all of us and I can't imagine how hard it's been for him to provide care for both me and my mother- and to remain sane. He's now retired living well-minus a kidney-but never stronger.

A few months after my dad my mother was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma. She had been unwell for a number of years leading up to this so in some strange way I felt relieved that we had some answers. Myeloma can smolder in people for many years before coming active and I'm sure this was the case for my mom and maybe even me. My mother's fight with the disease is the most inspiring I've heard for a myeloma patient. She was sixty and had a bone marrow transplant from herself where they take out some of her marrow clean it up and put it back in. Things started off OK but soon she got sick, then really sick having developed a nasty lung infection. Her treatment for the lung infection alone went on for a year. By Christmas of 2002 she weighed under ninety lbs and had endured a light heart attack. She was days away from leaving us and we were preparing for the worst. I remember my sister and I begging her to start eating more and she just couldn't. Slowly with dad tending to her every need with his amazing strength and patience- she began coming back to life. This was over the course of the next few years- she just kept getting stronger and to this day I swear she's still improving. She looks fantastic and has been taking a myeloma drug that has given her her life back and taken the cancer down to a point it's barely detectable. She plays bridge, she gardens, cooks for the family when everyone comes to town. I couldn't put in to words how big a comeback this was. I never realized how strong and competitive my mother is but I know now....and I bow to the master!


  1. Hey Chad! Nice work on the blog, I'm a follower! Take care my little cousin, I'm hoping you get home soon! xoxo Kin

  2. keep it coming...this is great stuff....its amazing what the power of the human and holy spirit can overcome...