More Death

Dear Cancer,

F You. No, scratch that.

Fuck you.

Now I feel better. Well, not really, but that helped.

How can you be happy with yourself? Honestly? How can you take any joy in what you’re doing to families on a regular basis?

Because I don’t get it. I didn’t get it when you took my Dad. Nor did I get it when you took another friend.

And I especially don’t get it now, Cancer.

Not when I just found out that a woman I knew in college (a year ahead of me) passed away in June from colon cancer. At age 39. Leaving a husband. And two kids.

Her name was Janet R., Cancer. I’m not sure if you introduce yourself to each person that you take away from us. But, let me tell you this, as much as you’re an ass, you should get to know Janet. Because if you did take the time to get to know these people, then maybe you wouldn’t take them from their families and loved ones any more. You’d see how special Janet is and you wouldn’t want to disrupt all the good she was doing for her family.

I haven’t talked to her in a long time, and I’ll admit to not even knowing she was in your grasp. But, let me tell you this, you big creep, when I got word yesterday that you took Janet from her family and friends, I sat at my desk for 10 minutes and couldn’t do anything.

And then I started to remember Janet as I will always know her — vibrant, vivacious, friendly, giving, witty and just an absolute delight of a person. And, to add to her charm, a little nutty, too.

One of my favorite Janet stories is her recapping her experience dealing with a flat tire. When she took out the owner’s manual, she looked under “H” to get the process under way.

Why H, Janet, I asked.

For how to change a tire.

And she was serious.

What I also remember most about Janet is that she never just called me Mike or Michael. She always — like every time — used my first and last name. That was just her thing. And I loved it. She’d do anything for anyone. That’s just how she was. Didn’t matter if she knew you for 10 years or 10 minutes, once she knew you, there was a connection.

Her husband and kids must be amazing people. Because that’s the way Janet is. A great friend, and I’m sure an even greater wife and Mom. And now you’ve ruined that. Not just for her, but for her family. How can that possibly make you feel good, Cancer?

I just don’t understand you, Cancer. And I’m to the point where I really don’t even want to try. Not if you’re going to keep doing this stuff — taking good people for no reason. I mean, seriously, can you give me a good reason why you took my Dad? Why you took Janet? I don’t think you can.

If you ever take me, Cancer, it’ll be the last thing you do. Because if I ever meet you first hand, I’m going to kick your pathetic little cowardly ass.



7 Comments on “More Death”

  1. carrie121870 says:

    Mike – My sentiments exactly. No Cancer does not care who it takes, when it takes them, or who is left behind. No Cancer does not introduce itself and say here’s just a little taste, a warning if you well. It comes on usually in some big way. I know personally – like you what Cancer does to a family. I know what Cancer and the monumental scare does to one’s self and one’s outlook on the world.

    But what I don’t know is Why? And I know of noone who can explain why? I’ve tried to figure it out and just can’t come up with anything that makes sense. The most logic I can give you is “things happen for a reason, I’ve just gotta believe.”

    PS If it ever knocks on my door again, I’m with you I’m kicking its ass all the way!

  2. Molly says:

    I fucking hate cancer.

    That is all.

  3. JenBun says:


    Sorry to hear about the loss of your old (but soooo not old!) college friend. She sounds amazing!

    Remember her like that.

  4. Molly says:

    Mike My mom died of cancer. I hate cancer too. its evil. I hope someday we figure out how to kick its ass.

  5. Anna says:

    Okay, so I just came from Christine’s, where I left this comment. I’ll leave the same exact one here.

    I lost both my parents to cancer by the time I was 21, so as you can imagine, I’m SO with you. Harness the hate. You may hate cancer, but I love this post and you for writing it.

    Here’s your first triathlon to support. My cousin, a single mother working full time and going to school is also training with Team in Training for a triathlon to raise money for research–it’s this weekend.

    Check out her training log and her goal to raise $4000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. She is so inspiring.

  6. Stephanie says:

    GODDAMN CANCER. My grandma is on her last leg right now because of lung cancer. If I ever met Cancer in a dark alley, let’s just say it wouldn’t make it out.

    Sorry for the loss of your friend…

  7. christine says:

    Seriously spooky that we wrote our cancer posts within four days of each other. I got shivers.

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