Each year as August gets long in the tooth and the back to school commercials are in full swing, I get a bit of a melancholy feeling when I think about losing the lazy, hazy, sunny days of summer. This year in particular its impending close is bittersweet. I have completed my Holistic Nutrition program and look forward to where the winds will take me. Niagara-On-The-Lake was wonderful. Summer jobs for my kids have gone well and soccer season was good. But without a doubt when I look back to its memories, the one that will forever be foremost in my mind will be of the front seat ride I took without having to even buy a ticket. Well check that, I wasn’t front seat but I was definitely premium row. No, front row was occupied by my sister, her husband and their kids. Barely in to flip flop season, a cancer diagnosis took them on the ride of their lives.
My brother-in-law was diagnosed with end stage melanoma that was so swift in its destructive path it left him with only weeks to live. According to test results and statistics. Not according to us.
My sister and brother-in-law asked me to be a part of their team and truth be told I was terrified. And I told them so. I wanted the best for them, for him, and I didn’t think that was me. I felt under prepared and too close to be objective. But they insisted and I am to this day humbled by their faith in me.
So we went to work this team of ours, lead by my sister. We were and are a team of medical and alternative practitioners, family and friends. And as I witness this miracle unfold not one aspect trumps the other. For I truly believe that as much as medicine and diet have been a huge part of his story, underlying its affect has been the unwavering faith and strength of his family and friends who pray, cook, drive, visit and offer all that is needed to allow my sister and her kids to be pillars of support as he fights his disease. And fight he has. A few weeks are now a few months and scans showing pervasive cancer now show a man with no visible signs of cancer at all.
So goodbye Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman! I have new Super Heroes now. It’s my brother-in-law who will do whatever it takes to be with his family. It’s my nephew who only wanted one more time to tell his dad he loved him. It’s my niece who graced his hospital bedside in her prom dress. It’s my youngest niece who held her father’s hand with quiet strength beyond her years. But most of all it’s my baby sister who will not shed a tear to show weakness. Who, with her strength and resolution, will not allow anyone to take their hope away and who continues to this day to be the lifeline of her husband never stopping the search for ways and means to help him win the battle of his life.
You are all inspirations to me. And I love you.