Breaking the News

On Friday nights my mother comes over for dinner. When she got to my house, she asked me what the doctor said. I said I wanted to wait until Kyle got there so I could tell them both together. I tried to just sound “normal.”

Telling people news like this is really awful. I went through it with the thyroid cancer, which was a piece of cake compared to this. When you share this kind of news, you somehow become responsible for the reactions of the people you’ve told. I remember specifically telling a coworker about the thyroid cancer, and she started crying. And there I was comforting her, with the “There there. It’s going to be okay.” I know she was just showing her concern, but you think, “Wait a minute, I’m the one who has cancer.” You end up having to rally for other people when you really don’t want to rally at all. You want to scream.

When Kyle got there, and we all sat down to eat, I started off with, “Well, it’s not good news.” I explained what I knew, which really wasn’t very much, the recommendation of finding treatment elsewhere, and said that I had a lot of homework ahead of me. There was a lot of silence. It was a somber dinner.

When my mom was leaving, she hugged me and said, “I don’t want you to be sick.” I said that I didn’t want to be sick either. Then I had to tell my friends. My boss.

I really hate that other people have to worry about me. It’s not who I am. I’m independent, I do my own thing, make my own decisions.

Time to rally.

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