No Brave Warriors at Battle Here


Sunday night

After a frenzied morning of figuring out which shows to record on which DVR in order to catch tonight’s Hallmark Hall of Fame Movie premiere, we settle into bed with another late night dinner with The Makeover on our immediate viewing agenda.


But first, while getting ready for said Dinner And Movie In Bed routine—we do our also usual starting and finishing of random or neglected conversations mid tooth brushing and face creaming—when CC says, “I don’t know How can you stand to look at me!”

“Huh?” Spit. “What?”

“I said, I don’t know how you can stand there and talk to me when I look so gross….and then I go look in the mirror and go, Oh my god I look so gross!”


I wipe my mouth and say, “You’re this far in and you’re still not aware of the reality of this all? I know this isn’t the first time in three months that you’ve looked in the mirror. And the last thing I’d say is that you look gross!” And I’m not saying that to placate her. I see that she’s bald. Exhausted looking. Scary skinny. But I wouldn’t say gross. I just see my friend.


What I also don’t see is a brave woman. (And this treatment stuff is scary!) Nor a warrior “fighting this battle”. Or any of those other well-intentioned adjectives we tend to give women under treatment for cancer we hear in all those syrupy pink ribbon advertisements and well-meaning, pom pom waving social media posts.


CC has said so herself, “I’m not brave. I’m just doing what I have to do to live.”




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