Monday, June 20, 2011

a letter to cancer

Dear Cancer,

I've given you a lot of thought lately; it would really be impossible not to as you have endeavored with great success to encroach upon my life--attempting to rob me of opportunities, peace and time.

Ahhhhh, but you have greatly underestimated me. ;)

I am stubborn. Some might call that a detriment, but I know it for the fortuitous blessing that it is. A lot of traits fall under the umbrella of, "stubborn," chief among them:


and let's not forget one of my favorites: resourceful.

And you might be interested in knowing, I've been through and survived worse than what you've thrown at me.

I am sure it scares you to know that I have all these weapons stashed in my arsenal. I know it's humbling for you--a disease teeming with hubris--to know the strength of my resolve.

I'm aware of the way you ravage lives, deplete resources and separate loved ones from their families. I am not ignorant to your grip on so many lives and the negative effects that lie in the wake of your devastation.

I know that for many people, you are a form of death and fear; that those attributes are your calling cards. I am also aware that not everyone has the blessing of forging a life beyond your arrival.

But I think you underestimate human spirit: the need to not only survive, but to prosper. The aching need in a mother's heart to watch her children age. The subtle desperation with which a husband prays for his wife's recovery while she struggles to gain physical strength in a wearied and weakened body.

I think you have no clue of the great gifts you often leave behind. Your devastation knows a boundless reach and impacts the lives of nearly every individual on this earth in some capacity.

But what might surprise you, is how great a blessing you provide to so many. The family rifts that mend, the strength and courage that is adopted by so many who's hearts had long been ignorant of their true caliber. The poignant awareness that breaks boldly, exposing the genuine scope of a human's soul.

It is because of you I've had a blessed awakening--a restructuring of priorities, dreams and all the aspects of Hollie-ness I hold dear. I have been honed and polished--as cliche as it may be--and have received a glowing glimpse of the woman I'm becoming.

You have been an incomparable impetus in the evolution of my spirit. Thank you for that.

You probably find that appreciation of mine intensely irritating. Another point in my favor. :)

It's not in your nature to enjoy losing, but you should get used to it because I am not the only strong one out there and science is gaining on you.

I hope you've enjoyed having the last laugh for as long as you have, because the tide is turning and your days are numbered.

Consider that your prognosis, Cancer!


  1. Well written, Hollie. It often takes a trial like cancer to bring out the best in ourselves. It's definitely a refining fire that leaves us shining like gold. :-)


  2. Hollie! EXCELLENT! You are amazing. I used to say to myself before each procedure or surgery or chemo.... "Thank you Cancer...for teaching me to STOP and LISTEN. Thank you Cancer...for teaching me WHO and WHAT is truly important. Thank you can go now" YOU ROCK HOLLIE!!!

  3. Just a kick ass blog... somehow came across it while researching my own situation. I am a few yrs older than you but traveled a very similar path in my dx, choices, attitudes, etc. However you are jut a little cooler than me and I salute you!