I want to share a story of a family that has touched me deeply by the love and joy that radiates, even amidst the tremendous struggles that cancer has placed before them.
Tone, a 36-year-old wife and mother of two boys, recently heard the horrifying news that her cervical cancer has returned and has spread. She was initially treated for this cancer in and is now half-way through with her latest radiation after which she will start at least 5 rounds of chemotherapy. She is already feeling exhausted and painful.
Last month she had to make a difficult decision to take a leave of absence from work as this would mean that the family income will change without her working full time. She talked with her husband about this decision and felt that they would just have to find ways to make ends meet and that she needed to focus on healing. Tone is worried about providing many of the basics like the groceries, money for gas to get to treatment and paying bills. She never asks her medical team for help, but we were aware of her situation and thought that your listeners might be able to help.
Tone‘s 14-year-old is on the All-Star soccer team and is trying out for the high school team. He loves music and would love to have his own iPod or new clothes. Her older son enjoys sports and is about to graduate. Tone is worried about him and the big changes this will bring at his age. She and her husband made the commitment to house their son and his girlfriend so that they can finish school and work to further their careers.
Tone and her family live a modest life when I asked what she does to pamper herself, she said photography makes her happy and that she would love a new camera. As much of their extended family lives far away, she has photos of them around the house to feel them near her, especially during these trying times. She glows when talking about her husband who has become Mr. Mom and takes care of the kids, makes their meals and makes sure Tone eats cancer-fighting foods. He does the two loads of laundry a day. Tone giggled and said she hopes their washer and dryer from 1994 will keep working.
Tone shared that “God doesn’t place more on us than we can handle.” The family enjoys building special memories together and Tone is there with the camera to document them all. Thank you for sharing your blessings so that Tone’s kids can have the chance to experience Christmas and have a life that seems close to normal this holiday season.
Social Worker--Anderson Cancer Institute at Memorial
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