Friday, December 29, 2006


My oldest brother has been dating a significantly older woman for the past few years. And by "significantly older" I mean yeah, she could be his Mom. She's got kids older than him. She's a grandmother.

It's a weird relationship, I guess. She's a very ballsy woman - the complete opposite of my quiet, needy brother. He needs someone to tell him what to do - she likes to be the teller. I guess that's why they work so well together. They seem to fill each others' voids - they're happy together - and that's what matters.

A couple weeks ago, his girlfriend (maybe I'll say "ladyfriend") was diagnosed with colon cancer. She'd gone in for her routine colonoscopy and they found something. They decided to run more tests and discovered that it had already spread into her liver - tumors all over. She's had this stuff growing inside her for a long time and even though she's gone for her routine testing, the doctors have missed it. And now she's screwed.

It's hard to know what to say to a person who is in that situation. She's the first person in my close family with cancer (mostly we all just have heart disease and mental illness.) I've heard the horrors of cancer - the way it takes its toll. I'm scared for her and I'm scared for my brother. She is his first love - I hope he can be strong through it all.

They say that people come into our lives for a reason. I wonder if having to go through this experience will change my brother. He has always been a germaphobic hypochondriac. Now he has to stand tall while the woman he loves battles the real deal. I figure it will either kill him or transform him. I'm hoping for the latter.


L*I*S*A said...

Speaking as someone who helped her mother battle sarcoma (a very rare type of soft tissue cancer), I can tell you it does change you. It's subtle at times and blatant as well.

Cancer is an insidious disease, and I am still amazed at how many people I KNOW who are affected by it personally.

If this woman is as important to your brother as it sounds, he'll be strong for her. He'll possess a strength he never knew he had. It may surprise him and those who know him. She will need him and everyone else who loves her. I am keeping her in my thoughts and prayers.


Pensive Turtle said...

Thanks, Lisa. You're a really awesome person to have in her corner.