Returning the Favor and other Slices of Life

Returning the Favor
Returning the Favor
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Monday, July 07, 2008

Wherein I shamelessly use the tragedy of a friend to raise money to fight cancer

Don't say I didn't warn you. If this post doesn't make you at least choke up a little bit, I don't really know what will. And yes, I will end this post with yet another request that you donate a little money to help fight cancer both in my community and nationwide.

So My friend RS tells us a few months ago that his poker playing will likely be curtailed in the coming months due to an announcement that is forthcoming. His wife has had a history of cancer, so there is some concern at this statement, until we notice that he's grinning. They're pregnant. And these guys will make great parents. They're young, successful and generally good people.

But his wife's cancer comes back. In the form of a brain tumor. Not long after she finds out she's pregnant, she had to go back in and get an inappropriate portion of her head removed. But the prognosis was good, and the baby remained healthy throughout, so all was right with the world.

Except she kept having headaches. So they went back to the docs a couple of weeks ago, and they found cancer cells in her spinal fluid (or something like that, I'm getting my info third-hand). And the general statement from the docs is that there's nothing they can do about it this time. She's beaten cancer twice, but it looks like the third time will be the unlucky charm.

But that's not the kick in the balls. I mean, it's a kick in the balls, but it's not the mamma-jamma kick in the balls. The real knee to the nads is that the baby is still healthy, but not far enough along to deliver. So all they can try to do right now is keep her alive for another six weeks or so until the baby is near enough to term to deliver, and then they can let her die.

I'm pretty sure that's the saddest thing I've ever heard of, much less written down. I'm angry, and am made even more angry by the fact that I have no target for my rage. I can't do anything to fix this, and there's not even anyone to punch. I could be angry with God I suppose, but all that would do would be annoy God and waste my energy. And really, I'm pretty sure that I don't believe God actually has a specific plan for all of us anyway. I tend to think more like God makes big broad strokes of creation or destruction, and it's on us to deal with the details. I'm a little mad at science, because if we can drop a bomb down s specific chimney from 15,000 feet, shouldn't we have found a cure for cancer before my buddy has to go through this bullshit?

I know, it's actually easier to blow shit up than to fix shit. But I can't do anything for my buddy, and I don't have any words to express the cosmic unfairness of it all, and it makes me wanna vomit a little bit. So now I have someone else to ride for, and that really sucks. Donate a buy-in or two, the money goes to three good charities. The Brain Tumor Fund for the Carolinas works on treatment strategies and raising awareness of brain tumors. The Keep Pounding Fund underwrites upgrades to clinical cancer research facilities and equipment and funds costs for specialized research nurses, as well as clinical coordinators who provide patients with critical information about available trials and protocols. And the Lance Armstrong Foundation works with cancer patients to give them the information and tools to live, not die.

Thanks if you've already donated. If you've "been meaning to," here's another reminder.


3 comments:

Easycure said...

I'm proud, damn proud, to know you and join in your efforts to fight cancer. It's a fight that's well worth it.

One day, we won't have to put another dollar towards a cure because we'll have found it already. Then, we can cure the next thing.....

gracie said...

Count me in, but please don't consider it part of your evil scheme to take out the google ranking system. It's just a little transaction between me and you. For a worthy cause.

Jim The Knife said...

I'm also a friend of the couple and it is extremely upsetting.
My wife and I donate to the A C S every year.
We'll discuss the god stuff some other time.
RS came over to BG's Sunday and had an hour or so of relief. I felt sure it helped him.