I followed up this morning with the families newly absorbing their cancer diagnoses. I recognize their common thirst for knowledge, their wall of strength, their desire to crumble. I want to help them find peace so badly, but there is little I can do. The experience is unique to everyone, and the emotions that come with it are important to sink fully into.
I read this morning that the mother whose website I followed religiously for information on Benjamin’s chemo medicines is going to be a grandmother. Her son has successfully partnered with a wife in pregnancy, naturally, with no trouble, despite a high risk protocol like Benjamin’s. The hope for Benjamin’s fertility brought tears to my eyes.
More groups are stepping forward wanting to make rainbow stars. I continue to iron out the idea. It feels so good to visualize these stars in hospital windows.
Today was Super Bowl Sunday, and the boys wanted to have friends over. We invited our family and neighbors as well. Michael grilled, our table was completely full of food, and laughing kids were in and out all night long.
Before bed, I told Banyan that his friend, his camp counselor, the “worthwhile man” who takes him on the bus to Camp Highlands each summer, has stomach cancer. I explained that it is a totally different kind of cancer than Benjamin has, and that right now, the tumor in his stomach is too big to remove. They are tackling it with chemotherapy and hoping to reduce its size. Banyan looked sad and worried as he digested this news, but not shocked, or surprised. I know the wisdom he has gained is useful to him; it makes him able to more easily handle such big news, and to be more deeply empathetic. But I hate that, honestly. I hate that cancer is so common in his world.
This is a big week ahead, for each of us. Our work and school calendars are very busy. We also have our meeting with All Children’s on Thursday. Wishing for presence and peace as Monday approaches.