Sunday, May 24, 2015


It all happens all at once and it's just one horrible thing after the other.

When I wake up in the morning I check my emails. I do it to try to stay awake between alarm clock snoozes. I'm thinking I should change this routine and hit youtube instead, save emails for when I'm fully functioning and awake.

I got three emails from my sister yesterday morning, they were forwarded from my great aunt. They were yet another dagger stabbing into an already gaping wound but to be able to explain the pain and fear I need to briefly explain my family situation.

My mother died of lung cancer. She was not a smoker. She died when I was in my mid twenties, 10 years ago.
Shortly after she died my aunt, my father's sister, died of breast cancer. Both were devastating on me. They were horribly young deaths and while I wasn't super close with my aunt it hit home really strongly because my cousin was about my age.

There was a few years interval with various other horrible family things, many of which I've written here but most of which regard the Bf's family, including his brother's fight and triumph over cancer, his son's fight with drugs and his daughter's fight with suicide which just recurred again, not to mention my maternal grandmother's death at the age of 98.

A year ago however, and I can't remember if I mentioned this or not on here, my father was diagnosed with prostate cancer. It was a rough time with that, though I do know that the prognosis for prostate cancer is very good. He is fine, he is under relatively good care and I try hard not to worry about it.

Back to the emails from yesterday morning.
The emails from yesterday morning were to tell my sister and I that my uncle (my mother's brother) has stage IV lung cancer, the same lung cancer my mother died of. It had metastasized to his bones and that's how they discovered it. My great aunt (my grandmother's younger sister) is obviously very shaken by the news. She wrote us insisting we come back to N. America to get tested because the doctors say it's genetic.

When I read the emails I burst into tears from a slew of different emotions. Fear, sorrow, anger helplessness... I can't even describe the various sensations. Mainly it brings back horrible memories of my mother's illness. I was never that close with my uncle. He's an odd person, mentally not quite right and while I always hug him when I see him, I've never spent time with him.

I'm terrified. I've been terrified since my Aunt died. Having cancer in the family, ALL my closest relatives with the exception of my two grandmothers (and my sister), all have or have died from cancer. Is it genetic when brother and sister die of the exact same cancer at about the same age when no-one else in the family had the same cancer or was there some external factor, something at their school, or something they were exposed to?

Monday or Tuesday I'll talk to my doctor to see what kind of tests there are. Just to be on the safe side I'll probably have to get tested once a year.


Osbasso said...

Hope your tests come back with good news. In the meantime, try not to imagine the worst scenarios. (yeah, I know...easy to say...). Hugs to ya!

Peter Princip said...

cancer is that scary thing that lurks in the dark. I totally understand how you feel about it, get tested, be healthy, then forget about it and be happy. Don't let it take you over.