My experience with cancer is very fresh, as I lost my dad in August. I saw first hand how quickly this dreaded word earns the fear it spreads when it is spoken. At that moment, there was no fluffy optimism screaming that Justin is young and will beat the crap out of this! Instead, my hearing got muffled, and visions of my dad overrode my thoughts. My head was screaming that Justin is too young and that is far less acceptable than my father at 73 years old. I am never known for my optimism, and the hands-on experience from this past summer did not help. I “heard” that Justin had already come out of surgery that same day and was getting scans to see if it had spread. I only thought of his new job, new house, and soon-to-be wife.
Disbelief was the first word of choice. Fear of what news would come next was soon to follow. Last, before leaving this meeting, was guilt over the lack of communication with my friend once this new school year had started.