I can recall 4.5 years ago when the doctor told Kevin and I that the growth they found in his esophagus was most likely cancerous. We told immediate family right away the possible prognosis – everyone around us tried to remain positive and insisted the tests would come back benign, but Kevin and I knew and felt otherwise. We were unfortunately correct.
As I watch the current season of ‘Parenthood’ and they struggle with voicing the word ‘cancer’ to their friends and family, I can see how difficult it is to share that news with the ones you love. I can’t tell you how it felt for Kevin to tell everyone he had cancer, or for my mom, or my dad to tell us. It is not an easy burden to share with others. You know that they will worry, you know they will have concern and want to be involved. You know that they will have to walk this burden with you.
It’s a burden having cancer, but it’s just as much a burden passing along that information to others. There’s no right way to drop it, but having information goes a long long long way. I wish we had gotten more answers before sharing our concerns with others, but then again, it took nearly 2 months to diagnose, and that’s a long time to go without any surrounding support.
If you’re on the receiving end? Deep breathe, save your questions for later, or not at all. It’s their prerogative what they want to share, and it’s yours to lift them up when they’re sharing this deep, disturbing news.
It’s never easy to share something like that – something that’s invading your body, your family’s life.