Something that I’ve been writing around in this blog but never hitting straight on is cancer.

My brides’ cancer, that is.


She was diagnosed early in the spring of 2015. It hit like a ghost freight train from nowhere. She wanted to keep it between us while the girls went through exam season at the University of Alberta. I don’t know how she did it, but she didn’t want to throw them off of their game while they studied and wrote their finals.

The damn thing about cancer, at least in my experience, is that it comes with blasts of big moments followed by long uncertain weeks and months of wonder and uncertainty.

“I’m sorry to say that you have cancer.”


“We’re going to do some tests, then after weeks of this, we’ll tell you what we might do.”

Then after you get your head around that, they tell you something else. Sock.  OK. But then it’s something else. Pow. And something else yet again. Biff.

I have no idea how she did it. How she does it.

Patricia was first told it would need surgery or radiation treatment to take this one. That would depend on tests. When surgery was decided on that seemed good. As good goes in these things. It would be a very invasive surgery that would require a lot of recovery.

That happened in early June.

By late July she was told that it may have spread. She would still also need radiation. Oh, and chemo. WTF?

Five weeks of Monday to Friday radiation chased with a Friday round of chemo. Wow.

She fought through. She’s fricken tough and amazingly determined.

And she had to be brave. Somebody asked what’s the difference between what I faced with my stroke and what Patricia went through with cancer.  I put it this way.

A stroke is like being in grade 4 on the way home from school when the biggest, meanest kid in grade 6 smashes you in the face. Out of the blue. You have no time to think, you just fight.

With cancer, you’re in grade 4 walking to school and that same gig, mean kid walks up to you and says that today, after school he’s going to smash your head in. You have all day to think about it. During recess he takes a couple of stinging shots just to set the stage. Physical pain mixes with anxiety over the unknown all day. You have to screw up our courage all the while knowing that this bully has kicked the shit out of loads of people before you. You have to think about the ones you know that took the bully on and won, but that’s hard to do. And they all have scars.

My gal is a fighter and she’s taken everything that the bully cancer had thrown at her. I’m sure that she’d going to completely kick his ass.

On January 18, she goes in to meet with the oncologist to get the latest.



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