Dear Cancer, I HATE you and I THANK YOU.

If cancer has affected your life, read this blog post.

If cancer hasn’t affected your life, read this blog post.

 Because it matters.  Epic shit matters.

Loving, sharing, helping, hugging, caring  for someone with cancer is epic shit.

And it matters.

*

Disclaimer : This is the longest post in the history of the world.

 Go grab yourself a pot of coffee or a humongous bottle of wine.  You will need it.

No coffee? No wine? Tequila shooters will work in a pinch.

 Same Same but different.

Do you want to know what cancer feels like for a patient or anyone who loves someone with cancer?  It’s a caffeine high of heart thumping madness mixed with the sting of a tequila hangover.  Minus the good times of the tequila.

CANCER is a roller coaster ride of emotion, love and laughter mixed with …

a whole lotta throw up.

This blog post is about ….

A journey of cancer.

It is politically incorrect.

Slightly offensive.

Somewhat of a Debbie Downer depressing.

And it has a happy ending.

Kind of like a hooker.

Cancer is a tricky little dude to write about.  Finding the words to write is like writing a hot sexy love letter while sitting beside your Grandma…..But worse…..It’s impossible.

 I know.  I tried.  Epic fail.

What’s the big deal about writing about cancer?

 Surely, if I can hurl an acorn at a squirrel from my treehouse porch …

NOTE : the squirrel hurled the acorn at me first !!!!!!

{ I just screamed those words }

My great escape

 Surely I can write about cancer.

NOT.

 Not easy at all.

I wrote this blog post a bazillion times.

Wrote it.  Scratched it.  Burned it.  Started again.

I’m an expert. I practiced during my childhood with love notes to all the kindergarten boys.

Wrote it. Scratched it. Burned it.  Started again.

It never worked.  Thanks for the tomboy hair cut mom.  THAT worked.

 I remained dateless until 17.

Yup.

 Then…while contemplating this blog post… a brilliant thought hit me.

 The light bulb went off.

{ P.s. I need to grasp these smart light bulb moments, they don’t come that often }

I should write about cancer because

Cancer affects each and every one of us.

Dear Cancer, I HATE you. 

Put your arm up if you know someone who has cancer.  See… look how many of you have your arm up!  Put your other arm up if you know of someone who has lost their life to cancer.  I just know that so many of you have both arms in the air.

Now look around the room you are sitting in.  Everyone around you is wondering why in the hell you look so stupid with your arms up in the air.  They probably think you are getting robbed.  Put those arms down.  Or hand me your money.

Now is the time to put those arms to good use.  Go HUG someone.  I will wait for you.

Did you get up from your chair?  Do it.   I know you are still sitting there.

Get up.

HUG. HUG. HUG.

Dear Cancer, I THANK you.

HUG

I believe in HOPE . I BELIEVE in believing : Believing that there is light through all this darkness.  I don’t need to remind anyone that there is darkness in cancer.

It is so very sad

It is so very scary

It makes you cry

It makes you cry the kind of tears that come out of your nose.  Not the pretty super model cry. A REAL cry.  Hyperventilate into a bag.  CRY.  Can’t catch your breath.  CRY.

Cry like you have never cried before.  CRY.

* It tugs at the deepest parts of you that you didn’t even know existed * It shatters your belief system * It makes you doubt * It uproots you in ways that you didn’t even know could happen * It confuses everything *  It is scary as hell * Yes * I said that already *

* It is scary as hell *

Dear Cancer, I HATE you.

SHINE LIGHT

 The secret in the cancer fighting sauce is to outshine it with light.

But that secret sauce alone, just isn’t enough.  If one more person tells me that having a positive outlook on life is what can save someone from dying of cancer – I will drop kick them AND bitch slap them all at once.   OK,  I would at least trip them.  I have learned, over my lifetime, that a positive attitude is not enough.  It is essential.  It it beautiful.  It is full of awesomeness, but that alone is just not enough.

Read. Listen. Learn. Love. Laugh

A positive outlook, some magic juice mixed with some vitamins, aromatherapy oils and good old fashioned great attitude will not save you from dying from cancer.  When I hear that theory I want to tell people :

They can just shove that theory right up their whahzoooooo.

You can quote me on that.

When all else fails….Call your girlfriend.

Before you jump through the computer and tell me that I am wrong.wrong.wrong….I am going to tell you that I am the boss of this blog.  LOL.  I can write whatever I want.  I tell that to my kids all the time.

You are the boss of you.

Except if they attempt to text at the dinner table.

Then, I am the boss of them.

 Just sayin’.

Mouth-piece of laughs

*  I do believe in filling our bodies with health, nutrition, vitamins, minerals and a lot of water  *  Copious quantities of water  *  I do believe in aromatherapy  *  Mostly because it smells so damn good *  I believe in trying alternative medicine * I believe in praying * I believe in loving life * I believe in doing everything humanely possible to live live live *  I believe in learning how to laugh, cry and sip your wine without it coming out of your nose * (P.S.  That is a cancer survival skill  )

It is still not enough.

*

We need each other.  We need a small village of support.  We need to stick together like glue.  Without it, we become…well…unglued.  We fall apart at the seams.

 We need a support system beyond belief.  We need modern medicine. We need our friends.  Our family. Our children.  Doctors.  Nurses.  Complete strangers.  Health care workers.  Wine.  Tequila.  Whatever floats your boat.

*

Dear Cancer, I THANK you.

*

I THANK you for the beautiful moments

 We need to hug each other more often.  We need to recognize that sometimes the smallest, kindest move is MONUMENTAL to another soul.

Even if we HUG with our words.

But is it enough?

*

Is it really enough????!!!

*

www.lynneknowlton.com

I have known and loved so many beautiful souls with cancer.  Each one did all the right things and yet….they died.  I have also met others who have smoked like a chimney and drank like a fish and lived to be 102 years old.  Cancer can be like Russian roulette.  You never know when the gun is loaded and who it’s going to shoot.  There can be no rhyme or reason.

So why not try a paradigm shift ? Through the sadness, find some fun.  Honour the sad moments and cry.  Then leave them behind you and find some great ways to make the best of the journey.   Why not just suck it up and have a great time?  Hoot and holler and embarrass yourself.  Who cares?

*

You know all those things you’ve always wanted to do?

 You should go do them.

*

LIVE LIFE or DIE TRYING.

Life is about the journey not just the destination.

Why do I feel this way? Because I have lived my entire life in the sidelines of cancer.

The observant.

  • When I was a little girl, my Nana died from cancer at the age of 52.  She stood tall.  She was beautiful.  She loved my Pop and she loved living her life.  She had already lost her Mom and her sister to cancer.

Dear Cancer, I HATE you 

for taking the helm of our family ship.

  •  Shortly after, my Mom was diagnosed with breast cancer.  She was a young 26 year old Mom at the time.  My Mom is now a senior. She will KILL ME for writing that.  She is a three time cancer survivor.   I have watched and listened and felt the impact of what it is like to fight cancer with all you’ve got.  My mom is not a survivor of some wee little cancer dot on her toe. My Mom had serious ass cancer. The kind of cancer that kills women every.single.day. That’s my Mom.  She made it.

Dear Cancer, I THANK you 

for the blessing and privilege of letting me keep my Mom.

  • I lost my wild-crazy butt-nutty-Harley man of an Uncle to cancer.  My Uncle Mark loved his family, his friends and his Harley.  He was the coolest thaaaang my family ever had the privilege of being a part of.  He was a biker, but not a gangsta.  He loved the ride of the open road.  Leukemia ravished his body until he couldn’t fight anymore.  He gave it his ALL.


Dear Cancer, I HATE you.

  • I lost my Uncle Keith to cancer.  He loved his Aussie life, my Auntie, his family and friends.  A cancerous brain tumour took his life.  It stepped in fast, and overtook him before he could even begin to wonder what cancer was all about.  He loved helping other people.  Loved it with all his heart.

Dear Cancer, I HATE you.

  •  My Uncle Marty was recently diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma.  He has already lost his two only brothers to cancer.  Seriously?  Does this ever stop?!

Blog post update : Sadly, we lost my Uncle Marty on Nov 25th, 2012 after 8 short months of having Multiple Myeloma. You may read about that here : When cancer takes the life of someone you love.

Are you starting to wonder what kool-aid my family has been drinking?  Think again.  This happens every single day.  We are not alone.  There are millions out there. Biz-millions. Trillion gajillion billion-hood of millions.  So cancer, you can suck it.

  • Last but not least, my husband Michael.  He was diagnosed with a one in a million cancer.  He was 46 at the time.  The chance of diagnosis at his age was .1 in a million. Wtf?!!  Seriously.  That is nut house madness.

Dear Cancer, I HATE you.

 Enough is enough. 

***

My Dad.  My beautiful Dad.

  • I still can’t write the words to express the loss of my Dad.  You may not know it, but I was a blogger BEFORE I started this blog.  My previous blog was my chance to make an ass of myself when only my dog and 3 friends followed it.  The day I shared his funeral announcement on my past blog was the day that my blogging voice died.  The loss of my Dad was the biggest blow of my lifetime. He was the roadmap of my life. My Dad lived healthy, loved life, had hope, did every natural and medical option known to man…..and cancer unmercifully took his life.

Dear Cancer, I HATE you and yet, I THANK you. 

I am thankful for the opportunity to say goodbye to my Dad.  I’m thankful to have learned so much from him.

 I’m just thankful that I had a Dad that quite simply, just loved me so very much.

 I’m eternally grateful.

I didn’t write my lifetime of cancer history to make you feel sorry for me.  On the contrary.  I shared the story to share with you that you are not alone.  We are all in this together.  We can choose to close our eyes to it, or we can choose to find ways to make a difference in the lives of others.

A positive difference.  An epic difference.  Epic shit matters.

Dear Cancer, I thank you. 

I thank you for all the beautiful moments, epic moments and good times.  I am still saddened that good people die.  Friends and family who do everything in their power to live….die.  It happens.  Every. Single. Day.  So now I honour that.  I honour that when someone tells me that they have cancer…. I listen.  I don’t tell them that they will be fine.  That they will beat it.  I think that it makes them feel small to say those words.  As if what they are doing is not enough.

 Because if they don’t beat it,  they failed (??!!) 

Well, bull shit.

They WON because they are living a life that they love.

So screw you, CANCER.

Talk. Listen. Care. Share.

Five years ago, we thought Michael could possibly live for 5 years.  That was the median life expectancy for his cancer.

 5 years goes by fast.

 I promise.

Well cancer, take that life expectancy and shove it up your woohoo.

Today… he’s looking mighty fine.  Damn fine.  Hotter than a hot tamale.  Note : To our children, don’t get grossed out.   Grandma even said that about Daddy. Pinky swear it.  I think she even wrote it down on a card when she sipped all that brandy at the last Christmas party.

Shhh.  Don’t tell her that I told you.

Fast forward 5 years.  Yes, we had some scary moments.  I’m not going to go there, because it actually makes me cry. Big FAT tears…CRY.  I have had many moments where I wonder if the man of my dreams will be in my life for long.  Yes, I worry that he will die.  I don’t ever write the words for fear that I will jinx myself.  So high school of me.  Who says that shit?  OMG, if I say it out loud, he may die.

WAIT !!!!…

I just wrote it.

Now I’m screwed.

Then something great happened.

 Michael qualified for a stem cell harvest.

Dear Cancer, I thank you. 

I thank you with all my heart and soul.

What does a stem cell harvest mean?

I will try to put it into real words because when the Doctor explained it to us for the first time, my eyes glazed over from confusion and my brain caught a train to oh-my-Gawd-what-did-she-just-say-land?  

Stem cell collection means : Michael had to have high dose chemotherapy last week.  Big ass doses of chemo that knocked his socks off.  If that dose was blue, he would have pee’d like a smurf.  It was intense.  The chemo is designed to ‘trick’ his body into creating massive amounts of stem cells.  Massive stem cell production takes massive medical intervention.  Massive doses of chemo.  Massive doses of medication to get the stem cells out of the bone marrow and into the blood stream.  Wow, massive words everywhere.

I almost pee’d my pants in this moment. Crack me up.

The magic concoction also had negative side effects.  It made him very sick. His blood counts dropped.  He had fevers.  He vomited for 8 hours straight.  He slept for 2 days.  He  needed medication to prevent damage to his kidneys.  He had to drink some funky liquid to protect his organs.  It tasted like a combination of sheep urine and goat spit.  Ok, I didn’t sip it, but it smelled gnarly.  I almost hurled just pouring it in the glass.  Gross.

 He definitely took one for the team.  I would have chucked it in the garbage pail when no one was looking.

 {I am my fathers daughter}

 His immune system went through a world war.  He needed antibiotics to avoid infection, and had to avoid crowds to protect his immune system.

No crowds ?!!  Too bad.  So sad.  That just meant that I needed retail therapy to shop ALONE.

Me… shop alone?!!

 Dang.

Dear Cancer, I thank you.

I joke.  Not Really.

He then started a 7 day regime of injections to boost his stem cell production.  We needed a home care nurse for the injections.  I get hot flashes when I have to give Michael needles.  I’m having a HOT FLASH just thinking about having to give him a needle.  I’m a turd.

The injections helped his body to create new stem cells and push them into his blood stream.  Massive levels of stem cells.  8 million of them, to be exact !!!!  I am officially calling him the 8 million dollar man.  Shove over, 6 million dollar man.  A new hottie is on the scene.

The STEM CELL COLLECTION machine. How funky is that ?!! Woohoo !!

The good news is that they were able to collect stem cells for a future stem cell transplant for Michael.  It took three attempts, three days, and one final 5 hour sitting to collect the stem cells.  A pretty epic day.  Awesome on all levels of awesomeness.  The whole process of stem cell collection is mind-blowingly impressive and bewildering.

The bad news is that his body has been pretty beat up.  He is tired.  He has lost weight.  His hair will start to significantly fall out.   He will likely lose his hair on his head, his body, but not his eyebrows or eyelashes.  So he will look like a naked snuffleupagus. Do you remember Snuffy’s eyelashes? Epic.  Well at least Michael will have Snuffy eyelashes.

So what did his buddies do?

They got naked.  Sort of.

Head Shave. True friendship. EPIC.

You know what they say ;

If you ignore my muffin top, I’ll ignore your bald spot.

Why did we make this choice for stem cell harvesting and high dose chemotherapy?  Believe me, it was a tough choice based on what he would have to go through, and continue to go through.

As time goes by, the chemotherapy will someday stop working.  

At some point Michael will need to rely on the stored stem cells.  Those stored stem cells are like money in the bank for a rainy day.  Like a sperm bank, but without babies.  Ewwwwwwh, I just grossed myself out.

 The day will come when all chemotherapy and treatment options will simply just run out.  When all the love, the positive attitude and healthy living…. just isn’t enough.  The day may come where love and support and the absolute zest for life may not outweigh the weight of cancer.  A day where every option has been exhausted. When that day comes…. he will have the last resort treatment of a stem cell transplant using his own stem cells.

 It is the rabbit that they can pull out of a hat.

Minus the rabbit.  And the hat.

It is stem cells.  And a great guy.  Love that combo.

That is good enough for me.

 

So before you say…have hope, think positive, all will be well, he can beat it…… think again.  We do have hope. We do think positive.  We do every single thing possible to LIVE LIFE.  

We don’t make cancer our story.  It isn’t our story.  It is just there.  

Cancer is like having a monkey on your back.

Sometimes he messes with your hair.

Sometimes he jumps on your shoulder.

Sometimes he plays games.

Sometimes he just shits on your shirt when you least expect it.

Sometimes he just makes you LAUGH.

Breathe it all in

Love it all out.

And do epic shit.  Because it matters.

Lynne

 

 

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352 Responses

  1. Britney says:

    I was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma (NHL) Mantle T-Cell in 2007 after a biopsy in the right groin. I did 21 rounds of radiation with no real problems.

    Then in 2012 I had my 5 year scan and they said the NHL showed up this time in left groin, left armpit and left jaw. They wanted to do 5 months of chemo and then stem cell transplant which would have been a month in the hospital and then 18 to 24 months on my butt to recover. I said no to stem cell right away but yes to chemo.

    On the Saturday before I was to start the chemo, which I was given no time to think over, my brother-in-law came to talk to me about Dr.Palmer who provided high quality hemp cannabis oil for me and recommended some drugs along in which i took twice daily,and now the doctor confirmed am perfecltly ok and got no tumour on me again.you can get in touch with Dr.Palmer for help on his email: drpalmerhealthcare@gmail.com

  2. Julianna says:

    hello Lynne,
    I ran across this blog while looking for a cancer quote sititing in palliative care with my brother who has valiantly fighting multiple myeloma,, I myself have CML. I’m a nonviolent person but right now I really want to punch something or someone.. So I’ll just say cancer f— you, and Lynne thanks for sharing.

  3. LiSa says:

    Cancer is just one big baffling mess of a thing. We could certainly do without it. It needs to be disposed of. Like now. Lost my Mom, my EvErYtHiNg, to LEIOMYOSARCOMA last year. Arg. There is a humongous part of my heart missing now. Bleck. : (

    Your blog, fantastic. I look forward to following you in a non-creepy sort of way. Hoping to be inspired by your perspective on life. I want to unleash my awesomeness in memory of my Mom, Millie. Of course I’ll need to find my awesomeness first. I seemed to have misplaced it since her passing, but when I relocate it, there will be no holding me back! : )

  4. Anna says:

    Hi Lynne. I came across your blog while literally sitting with my mom while she got her first dose of Chemo today. She’s been diagnosed with stage 3 Lymphoma. I was searching for ‘Cancer’ on Pinterest hoping to find something that will give me the lowdown on the do’s and don’ts of Cancer. I’ve been hearing A LOT of different things from people about what to do, what to expect, how to mentally prepare myself. Instead of helping me, it actually made me want to pull my hair out, jump in my truck, and drive for hours. Then I came across your blog today and for the first time in 5 weeks, there was a genuine smile on my face. Thank you for sharing and enlightening something so serious and heavy. God bless you and your family.

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  6. Sydney Jordan says:

    I found your blog on a “cancer” search on Pinterest. I want to first start off by saying ‘WOW”, the strength your family has to have to keep fighting cancer is amazing. My dad was diagnosed with Stage 4 Metastatic Pancreatic Cancer on Labor Day. Your quote ” It tugs at the deepest parts of you that you didn’t even know existed, It shatters your belief system, It makes you doubt, It uproots you in ways that you didn’t even know could happen, It confuses everything” is the perfect way to describe my feelings. I am angry at God and questioning everything. I haven’t prayed in a week because I’m angry. I really need help with processing this whole thing. And YES its scary as hell

  7. beth randolph says:

    I just got home from my sweet daughter-in-laws funeral and typed I HATE CANCER into a search and found ur blog. Kelley was 27 years and has 3 young babies that she left behind along with my son (her hubby) and her family. she was just diagnosed with cervical cancer this past may and it basically ate her alive and fast. I am just so pissed of at cancer and I really really do hate cancer. my mom died from brain cancer when I was 6 years and I don’t remember much so this was my 1st real experience wathing someone I love dearly suffer with this evil disease. no one deserves to suffer this way. Kelley was such a beauty inside and out and my heart is broken….

  8. Eisha says:

    new to this…hubby has head and neck cancer…we start chemo a week from today…all is a bit scarey…but we’ll get through…we believe in prayer…LOVED this story…so awesome…felt like we were having a conversation…a convo with a friend that cares…prayers to you and your family…Dear Cancer, I HATE you and yet, I THANK you.

    • Carol Ann says:

      Eisha: My husband has also been diagnosed with head and neck cancer – is in his 23rd radiation treatment and 5th chemo. It is so damned scary and what makes it so hard is not knowing how to help them! I think the physical touch is fantastic for both of us but I fear he is not living life very well – I think he is giving up. I give you my blessings and hope you can ride this out with humor, grace and mutual love, too.

  9. Anna says:

    I recently lost my grandfather to cholangiocarcinoma (which is a growth in one of the ducts that carries bile from the liver to the small intestine). And now not even 3 months later my sweet kitty has been diagnosed with cancer in her salivary glands, and as surgery really isn’t a very reliable option for a cat, we’re taking a palliative route and I have to tell you it’s really hard. Cancer is scary and its really painful for everyone involved. But I’m learning to take everyday that she’s still here as a blessing. Cancer is a massive screw up in biology and it’s sucky. But staying strong as best I can and accepting that in the end no one lives forever is one of the only things that gets me through.

    • Oh no Anna,

      When it rains… it pours..

      Sending you lots of hugs and big love your way !!

      It is sucky, and it is the circle of life.. but somehow … that doesn’t always make your heart feel any lighter.

      Big love
      Lynne

  10. Lana Rayburn says:

    Lynne, I am so sad, can’t shrug this feeling off today, and yesterday, and the day before that………….Fuck Cancer….. ……… I did cry. I cried so very hard . Im crying now….I know it will ease up ….but today ………today is a hard day for me…………………..

    • Wow Lana

      I want to reach through the computer screen and give you the hugest HUG ever.

      Wait. Does that sound creepy? LOL. I mean it in the best-non-creepy-way-ever.

      You deserve a big hug and a good cry.

      With much love,
      Lynne xoxxoxo

  11. Deanna Russo says:

    This is a fantastic blog. So very well said. I am a lung cancer survivor and one of my closest friends fought breast cancer two years ago. She kicked cancer’s ass! She was just told that her cancer came back in her bones. I HATE CANCER! Thank you for your words of wisdom.

    • You are most welcome Deanna…

      ANNNNDDDdd I completely understand your frustration.

      I hope she kicks cancer in the teeth this time again. She sounds like a real fighter … and she sounds like she has beautiful friends like YOU. xoxoxo

  12. Gabby Friedman says:

    I’m Gabby. My little sister is a cancer survivor and I have so many family members-so many friends-so so many people in my life that have been affected or had or died from cancer. I totally agree with you. I hate cancer. I hate it so much. I wish cancer were a person so I could show cancer the pain he causes. Yet I understand why you thank cancer too. I’ve gone through so many things that I never thought I’d be strong enough to do. Cancer has made me the person I am- it has built me up to be the strong person I am today. Yes, I hate cancer, but it has given me knowledge and understanding too. At 16 years of age, cancer in my eyes is a load of shit that happened to get in my way. It really sucks and I hate it so much :'( but at the same time, I wouldn’t have met the people I now know and I wouldn’t have become as close with certain people. I would not have made it this far in life without cancer being the drive for why I want to help people and why I want to accomplish things. So, thank you for listening and thank you for creating this blog. It is very very touching and the way you honored people moved me. You’re most definitely right- we are in it together. Thank you.

    • Wow Gabby !!!

      You sound so insightful and absolutely incredible !! I love love loved your note and I’m so sorry it took so long to reply.

      What a beautiful soul, you are!

      Keep doing what you are doing and thinking the way you do. You truly are angelic.

      With much love,
      Lynne xx

  13. Mike Humpley says:

    My name is Mike….I just lost my wife to ovarian cancer this year 4-14-14…We were together 21 years…She was my best friend and soul mate……..she completed me in every way….and now I am completely and will be eternally lost without her…..Everything now that I do after waking up each day and realizing she is gone seems completely empty and has no meaning whatsoever…I am just going thru the motions of a life that I dont even want to be a part of anymore without her…..I agree with you completely ..I HATE CANCER!!…….It turned the most beautiful woman I have ever seen and known in my life….Gods most perfect creation to me..and turned her into a woman who was reduced to a skeleton in the bed with tumors stretched across her chest tearing a hole down to her lungs and heart to where she couldnt breathe anymore and eventually stoped her heart…I had to watch my best friend look up at me and say “Mike….. im just a little girl”….”please help me”..and all I could do was cry and hold her and say ” I wish i could honey”….”I am so very sorry baby “..”i love you”….and then watch her die from this rotten twisted scourge of a disease………But I wanted to ask you….and forgive me if i am a litlle slow here…..please explain your comment on thanking cancer in any way for anything……………I would really like to understand where you are coming from when you say this………….and by the way I love you honering your family that you have lost and still have this way on your webpage here…..It is very touching to me……..

    • Hello Mike,

      There are no words to express my complete and utter loss about your sorrow and devastation you must be feeling right now. I am so very very very sorry for the loss of your wife. She sounded like a beautiful soul and you sound like a wonderful man.

      It took me years before I could right this blog post. I was a blogger before all of this, and completely lost my writing voice from all the cancer loss around me. I do understand why you must be wondering why I’m thankful now. Please know that I had to go through years before I could even type the words. I try to be thankful for the beautiful memories and the moments along the way. It is the only way I could think of to survive such a blow ….and many more cancer losses along the journey.

      People will try to find the words to make you feel better, but unfortunately there aren’t any. It crushes my heart to see/hear what you must be going through because of cancer and the aftermath of it. I did learn one thing about mourning… it doesn’t get easier over time, it just changes. That somehow made me feel better. I have a poem that a friend shared with me, and I hope you love it too.

      Sending you light love and healing and very very very big virtual hugs.
      With much love and understanding,
      Lynne xx

      PS. The poem is in this blog post that I wrote after my Uncle died.
      http://www.lynneknowlton.com/when-cancer-takes-the-life-of-someone-you-love/

      We are all creatures of this great earth-

      interconnected in ways beyond understanding.

      Take ELEPHANTS.

      So big.

      So strong.

      And yet,

      when a member

      of the herd passes,

      even elephants mourn.

      They gather around,

      extend their trunks,

      and gently touch

      the tusks

      of their fallen friend.

      It’s their ritual.

      It’s how they heal.

      And it’s sad.

      And it’s beautiful.

      So maybe

      what we’re trying to say

      is that the world

      doesn’t expect you

      to be fine with this.

      Be how you need to be,

      Mourn how you need to mourn.

      And know that

      you’re thought of

      with love.

  14. Tammy says:

    Girl you kick ass. Thank you for having the balls & the talent to say it. My BFF was just diagnosed with some bullshit head & neck cancer. She & I both lost our moms to idiot cancer. &#%k.!! I’m touched by your blog & I’ll share it with my peeps.. God bless ya. Be well.

    • Holy Batman Tammy, what a shit show. Pardon my French. I feel your pain sista, I feel your pain. Hang in, keep loving the way you love … and embrace it as a journey. The good, the bad and the fugly. OY. It’s all there when it comes to cancer.

      Thanks for your epic words. Big love and God Bless ya too.

      xoxox

  15. Jennifer Liston says:

    My mother was just told her cancer is back for the 4th time. Lymphoma!!! They said she can not do chemo again because it will not work. Her only option is trials. I hate cancer and just want to scream from a very high building!!! Thank you for this read.

    • Hello Jennifer,

      Ohhhh my, that sounds so discouraging, and yet there also may be light at what seems like the end of the tunnel.

      Trials can sometimes work too. It takes years for them to be developed, and they can be very promising. Very.

      Having said all that… I totally understand how you must be feeling right now. It can be totally deflating and will make you want to curl up in a ball and cry.

      Do it. Cry. Laugh. Embrace it all.

      Hang in there, love the moments along the way .. and cherish the time together … you are making memories with your Mom.

      Much love
      Lynne xx

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  17. neena says:

    i am a cancer survivor myself. i was diagnosed with ovarian cancer..did chemotherapy.. honestly, i am not sure, which one i hate most, the Big C or the other C.. chemo.. however.. i LOVE your writings on cancer… it made me smile…thank you…

    • Hello Neena

      Sorry for my late reply. Some comments slipped by me on my bloggy.

      CONGRATS to you for your beautiful cancer survival. The double C. Oy.

      You sound like one incredible woman !!

      Many hugs,
      Lynne xx

  18. Chelsie Wood says:

    I loved this post. It touched me in so many ways. I lost my mom to cancer 5 years ago when I was 18, and my how cancer has cheated me, but it has also given me lessons on living that I would have never learned elsewhere. I stumbled upon your blog because I was looking for a barnyard door tutorial, and somehow I found myself here. I don’t think it was coincidence. I will keep you and your family in my thoughts and prayers, and thank you from the depths of my heart for sharing this. It was written beautifully. warmly, Chelsie Wood

    • Hello Chelsie

      I missed your comment so somehow I replied super late. Thanks for writing in and I sure do appreciate your beautiful words too.

      You said it so well… cancer can cheat us and give us lessons … all at once.

      Big love, and I’m so sorry for the loss of your Mom. xoxox

  19. Mary Werner says:

    The first picture of Michael I said to myself Man what a great looking guy. Then I read this and see your family and the iguana and have to repeat Man what a great guy! To have a life so open and laugh is really living and I’m so glad to have read about you and your family. Michael really is a great looking guy but more important he is a part of a great life – congrats to you both and what lucky kids to have been raised in this family. Please don’t tell us if you kick cats or pick your nose – I want to believe there still are wonderful families out there. So refreshing to read about good news instead of all the sickies out there that make the headlines.. Pun intended! So you are living the theme of your blog and thank you for sharing.

    • Ahhhh so sweet of you to say Mary!

      Yes, we really do live a happy life ~ despite everything.

      Tomorrow ~ Roots Canada will be sharing a photo shoot of our family as A Canadian Love Story. I hope you get a chance to see that :)

      Much love to you, and thank you so very much for your absolutely beautiful words.

      xxoxoxoxox Lynne

  20. carmen says:

    I just loved it! Very emotional and inspiring to read, I just wish I could have an attitude and outlook like that! It made me laugh and brought tears to my eyes, couldn’t help it… I think everyone should read this!!

  21. Jess says:

    This was a very needed thing to read for me. I just found out my dad has cancer for the second time and it’s so hard to talk to people about it. My dad is my life and to lose him I don’t know what I would do. But to hear how other people have so much hope for their loved ones is very inspirational. So thank you for putting a little humor/laughter into this horrible part of life! I feel ready to do all I can for him!

    • Oh no Jess

      I’m so very sorry to hear that about your Dad. My heart hurts.

      May you have lots of great laughs, {and I know there will be tears… let them come} along the journey with your Dad.

      These are precious times. Much love to you and your family.

      Lynne xx

  22. Randi says:

    Wow! Reading this made me boo-hoo big time. You write so beautifully. I lost a sister-in-law to cancer, after a long battle, but I also know others who have survived. I must pass this on to a favorite niece to read.. I know she will love it

    • We all need a good tear every now and again don’t we, Randi ?

      I actually read it again today and I had a tear too.

      I think I need to write another cancer post and have more laughs. I’m ready for a good laugh again.

      Cheers ! AND thank you for leaving a comment on the bloggy !

      Lynne xo

  23. Kalisa Gary says:

    Great writing. Sincere, heavy, light and humorous all at the same time. Thanks for expressing! Made me shed a tear!

  24. Tara Ross says:

    Awww, Lynne…this post made me cry. I lost my best friend when she was 38 to cancer. We both had our second babies within a week of each other and three years later she was gone…with two little ones and her wonderful hubby who couldn’t believe what had just happened. That was 9 years ago and I still get the urge to call her on the phone and then remember that I can’t. Wow. Cancer sucks. Thanks for writing this.

    • Man, Tara… that is way too young to die. So sad :(

      My Dad used to say to me…when someone dies, you can still call them. It will just be a long distance call.

      Don’t ask me how he had a such a sense of humour when he was dying, but he did.

      It is absolutely heartbreaking to hear about losing someone so very special.

      Sending you the biggest hug,
      Lynne xx

      PS. We must meet IRL some day. xo

  25. Diane says:

    Life is precious and short, do all you want to do, enjoy life. Thanks for sharing. May 2014 be the best for you and your love ones.

  26. Julia Bradford says:

    Lynne – thanks for your reply! I’ve got to admit I laughed as well when I saw I used the word ‘positive’ – blast that word, it creeps in everywhere :) hope you & yours have a good Xmas, I shall raise a glass or two for you, me & everyone that has gone through it & facing everything that comes after, is still going through treatment or just found out.

  27. Julia Bradford says:

    Been through boob cancer this year & your words really resonate. I hated -HATED – being told to be positive because I didn’t need to be made to feel guilty for feeling awful, scared & sick. Right now I’m cancer free (hooray) & grateful to see blogs like yours sharing the truth – cancer is a harsh disease, treatment is harder then you can ever explain & yet somehow it can throw up many positives. Thank you so much for sharing.

    • Woot woot Julia ! I hear ya.

      Sometimes, when people say ‘be positive, you can beat it’ to cancer patients, (although I totally know that they have beautiful positive intentions) I want to punch them. Of course patients want to live. Who ever thinks, ‘wooohooo, I have cancer… I can’t wait to die’??? They already think positively that they want to live. It seems so simple when said out loud, but something that people aren’t even aware of.

      Not going to lie… I loved your comment that it ‘throws up many positives’… haha… a great mix of words AND I did a happy dance for YOU ~ cancer free !!!! Yessssss.

      With much love,
      Lynne

  28. Miriam says:

    This is amazing…I’m a 32 year old cancer survivor , I had my first son oct 2011 in May of 2012 I was diagnosed with 2nd stage ovarian cancer by July I had 3 surgeries my last being a full hysterectomy did all my chemo sessions, was cancer free by march 2013 such a blessing to be living especially that i have my son, I’m still facing challenges trying to get my weight n Health back just trying to be the normal me again feeling like myself , I still think of the day I was Told I had cancer will never forget it, there are days I cry so much cancer really changed my life and its crazy because cancer does not run in my family at all, when I was diagnose no one could understand stand what I was going thru as I morphed into a cancer patience not knowing what the next day will bring being sick my hair falling out , no one can still understand unless the been thru it but I beat it i survived my blessing are with everyone who is fighting , who has survived , anyone watching a family member go thru it, F**K CANCER !!!!!!!! Smile you’re beautiful , this blog is Amazing and i thank you for writing it god bless

    • Thank you so very much for sharing your story Miriam. Wow, you are a 32 year old cancer survivor of ovarian cancer?!! You are amazeballs. Keep doing what you are doing, it is working! You sound pretty beautiful, yourself. I feel blessed that you wrote to me. Much love, Lynne xx

  29. Jamie says:

    Hi Lynne,
    I’d say “welcome to the family” but none of us really want to be here, but can only vaguely remember being anywhere else. It’s like a fairytale that use to be our lives. I’ll keep it short—no I won’t even do that. Lets just say if I had to describe my 20’s death would be my verb of choice…Breast cancer, lou gehrigs disease, ovarian cancer, lung cancer, liver failure due to the fall out of hospicing and grieving everyone else…SUCKED. It kind of stunted my life & worse robbed others of theirs. It is like a scratched moment that my mind keeps skipping back to (luckily death occurred often enough I can pick the moment I get stuck on-based on familiar smells, objects, phrases.)
    After it was all said and done-I decided to live my life. I went back to school for my Masters in Australia-back to my first love: photography. I found a way to tell my story, which can be anyones story: http://thememorableimage.com/portfolio/photography-decor/cards/
    I want to believe it helped with the anger…then one month after I graduated my father died…and I decided the anger is mine to hold on to…it is perpetual and it is reasonable.

    • Of fairy floss and ocean dreams is a beautiful collection Jamie. So pretty !

      A creative outlet is a brilliant way to go. Otherwise, the whole story of cancer can be so overwhelming. Thank you for sharing your story and your photography with me.

      With much love,
      Lynne xx

  30. Carole says:

    Well Lynne, we’ve been included in the families hit with cancer. I hate cancer too. Eleven years ago our 21 year old daughter was diagnosed with stage four Hodgkins Lymphoma. She’s gone through I can’t count how many rounds of chemo, a stem cell transplant (3 weeks in the hospital), an assortment of alternative therapies, including 3 weeks in health centre in Mexico.
    She is living with cancer. To everyone’s surprise, including her oncologists, she had a healthy baby girl one year ago Nov 30.
    Life is strange.
    During all these years of our family living with cancer and hating it just as much as you do, I’ve been painting. Without the release of creative energy I would have cried myself to death with worry and fear and grief. If you’d like to view many of the paintings I did during the worst days go to my blog (http://carolereidartist.blogspot.ca).
    I hope your hottie is enjoying life to the fullest.
    Hugs,
    Carole

    • Hello Carole !

      Wow, oh wow… your paintings are beautiful. What a FAB creative outlet AND you are Canadian too ?!! YEsssss.

      I followed your art on your pinterest too. The mixed media art is so beautiful and inspiring. Well, it all is. I love the simplicity of it and that there is a story behind your art.

      A cancer story. It sounds pretty ahhhmazing that your daughter had a baby. What a blessing.

      Keep on keeping on. With much love,
      Lynne xx

  31. Michelle says:

    Hi friend. Here I am looking at pretty pictures on Pinterest, and I see your transformed kitchen, which is gorgeous by the way. So I follow the picture to your blog and see white bar stools, and you even have a magical cure for red wine stains. You’ve hooked me. And then I glance at your sidebar, and the word cancer. That.word.. And after reading and crying, and shaking my head in agreement, I had to send a hug. Wishing you joy in each moment and in growing old with your husband. xo

  32. Heather says:

    I lost my Grandpa last year to cancer, he had 4 different kinds… I’m not sure if you are aware, but Cannabis oil can kill the radical cancer cells. Google it, you’ll be amazed by what you find.!
    Good luck!

    • Whaaaaa Heather, 4 kinds of cancer ?! Yikes. Yes, my friends have shown me the videos on Cannabis oil. Seems incredible, doesn’t it? Well, you know what they say… try everything once :) xx Maybe that should be our next attempt at kicking cancer in the butt. xx

      • Heather says:

        I think that’s the real way to be successful in anything!! Usually it’s what we last expect that ends up saving us! Good luck!!

  33. Suzan Vaughan. says:

    I cried big fat unashamed tears for me, you and everyone. They will not stop cancer or bring anyone back, for if that was the case, I would not stop for a million years. Cosmic love to you and yours. X

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  35. Lise Laberge says:

    Wow!! How I stumbled to your blog is nothing short of good kharma. I just invested in reading THE blog that actually sats something useful about cancer!! And cherry on the sundae?! I also found what feels like a muse that inspires me to dare! How my ‘not a writer’ and ‘scared sh*itless to say things the way I feel them’ straight-jacket has been holding back to start writing my story and stomp on cancer! My stage 4 pancreatic cancer and I thank you Lynne. Looking at your amazing site on iPhone is what I had to settle for now…and can’t wait to spend a lot mote time exploring what you write and do on the ‘big screen’.
    Big happy dance from Montreal
    Lise

    • Hello Lise

      It was sooooo lovely that Karma stepped in and we met on the bloggy today. Really great !!

      I had something cool finalize this week and I haven’t even announced it on the blog yet. I am making iPhone covers that say YOU cancer VIVE ! You may just love that.

      I hope to do it in a way where some of the proceeds are donated to those that need some extra something something to help them thru cancer.

      Much love to you
      Lynne xx

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  38. Beautifully written! Though perhaps reading it at 6am, 32 weeks pregnant wasn’t the best idea, tears everywhere! My family is on cancer repeat. No longer is it a matter of being cancer free, but a matter of looking around and wondering who will be next. Sadly, not just two weeks ago it was my Aunt, breast cancer. We have survivors and we have lost loved ones. A game of Russian roulette, no better way to explain it.

    • Hello Ashley

      I am sooooo sorry I took so long to reply to you in my blog. I didn’t see it until today !

      I will kick ME for you. xx

      Did you have your baby ?!!!! I am so excited to find out. Yes, we are total strangers, but I am so excited !!! Ohhhhhh baby.

      Do tell.

      Cheers and with much love,
      Lynne xx

  39. Kathryn Hodges says:

    I could not read this without stopping by to leave a comment.

    THANK YOU!!!! Our family has only recently been introduced to the Cancer a monkey. 4 diagnoses within 12 months. One funeral already. And I was in a world of “when will this stop”.

    This post had helped me to stop. It can stop. Or it won’t. Either way, we need to just get on with living lives we love.

    Thank you,
    Kathryn xxxx

    • Dear Kathryn,

      Bless your heart. Four diagnosis in 12 months ? Un-freaking-believable that is !! Shocking, really.

      Hang on. Hang on for dear life. It is a journey that I wouldn’t wish on anybody… and yet I would wish it on others too.

      The only way to get through it, is to keep on going and put one step in front of the other. The smallest moments become beautiful memories. The little acts of kindness become engraved in your heart for forever. The strangers, the friends, the family…. they will surprise you with the biggest kind of love that you didn’t imagine was even possible.

      Hold on to that love. Hold on to it tightly.

      Many hugs,
      Lynne xx

  40. Megan says:

    I agree with at Trish (an online buddy of hers)

    What an incredible view…. I laughed … There were expressions in your blog that we’ve used many times ….

    When I was 8 my mum had her first melanoma (grade 4) in her 30’s – so lucky she pushed for a second opinion as 2 years later when I was 10 my father was diagnosed with AML (Acute Myloid Leukaemia) in 1985 when he was 45, 3 weeks later he was gone. Since then mum has had bowel cancer twice, another melanoma & thyroid cancer. April last year 2012 she was diagnosed with Stage 4 NHLymphoma (there is no stage 5), then if that wasn’t enough in Feb this year she had 2 seizures & they find a 55mm brain tumour ! I’m done with cancer. So sick of it’s presence in my life for the past 31 years ….

    I’m thinking that I saw your post (via Trish’s share for a reason) …. I am working on that. Working on my disgust (jealous to the max) of those people who live their fairy floss lives ….. Working on finding a ‘thankful’ angle….. I know I am the person I am today because of my yesterday’s…. And because of them I am empathetic, caring and when it’s shit call it shit. That’s my view.

    My mum’s strength through losing her husband in her early 40’s, 7 cancers’ suicide of my brother (only sibling) & she still has fight in her …. I guess our humour comes out when we say be careful eating a walnut and stepping in the shower …. Cancer can’t seem to get you, something random might !?!?!

    Wishing you & yours every strength & blessings with your lives
    Megan xx

    • MEGAN !!

      Unbelievable. I am speechless. Your Mom sounds like a walking M.I.R.A.C.L.E. Someone needs to write a book about her ! My hubby’s cancer is a stage 4 NHLymphoma too…so I get it. I totally understand what you mean about having an appreciation for life.

      It sounds like your Mom is actually a lucky charm :) She just keeps on going. I love the tenacity of her strength.

      Many blessings and über strength right back atcha.

      You sound sooooooo beautiful.

      Much love,
      Lynne xx

  41. Trish says:

    Three years ago my husband was diagnosed with A VERY RARE cancer on the side of his head (left a dent the size of a golf ball) – after Radiation he has been ok.
    One year ago I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer – I am almost finished my active treatment except for little pills I’ll take for 10 yrs.
    I think everybody should read this – you nailed it.
    I like to run and I run for fundraising in a hot pink tutu – who cares I ,love it.

    This resonates with me.

    Through the sadness, find some fun. Honour the sad moments and cry. Then leave them behind you and find some great ways to make the best of the journey. Why not just suck it up and have a great time? Hoot and holler and embarrass yourself. Who cares?

    *
    You know all those things you’ve always wanted to do?
    You should go do them.

    *

    LIVE LIFE or DIE TRYING.

    PS I wish MIke everything and more.

    • Hello Trish,

      Wow ! You sound like one incredibly awesome lady ! LOVE the pink tutu idea!!!

      It’s mind-blowing how cancer can strike a family like yours. Not one of you, but both of you. Makes you wonder what is in the water. LOL.

      It sounds like you have it figured out ( I totally understand the journey of getting on track ) … by doing all those things you’ve always wanted to do. I wrote another blog post about cancer that I will be posting in 2-3 weeks. I hope you come by and check it out. Please stay in touch and let me know how you both are doing.

      Keep running guuuuurl. That cancer will never catch you :)

      With much love,
      Lynne xx

  42. Abby says:

    I stubbled, literally, onto your blog while searching for inspiration.
    I’m the volunteer board president of a not-for-profit that is currently finishing a gift endowment ($1.5 Million)to the Survivorship and supportive services program at our local cancer institute (Ann B. Barshinger Cancer Institute).
    I loved this post, it is legit, real, raw, funny and transporting.
    Thank you for keeping it real and thank you for making me think more about what I do, how I do it and the time I give it.
    I’m a workaholic and a volunteer-aholic and hate to think about me and the time I sacrifice with my husband (who is so patient and kind with my running around).
    thank you thank you! I hope all is well with you.

    • Wow Abby !!

      You sound incredible. I.N.C.R.E.D.I.B.L.E. I have such a deep appreciation for the dedication and love that you put into your work & volunteer life. I bet your hubby thinks the world of you, because of the very nature of the work that you do. So giving with such an outward focus on others. You sound like a beautiful soul.

      Thank YOU for making such a difference in the lives of so many who are affected by cancer. Your difference makes a difference.

      With much love and appreciation,
      Lynne xx

  43. Denis says:

    Impressive testimony
    For an impressive recovery.

    Congratulations and Thank you

    Denis

  44. Suzanne Doyle says:

    Lynn…..I love the way you write….straight from the heart..!. I know it wasn’t intended to make anyone cry…..but I’m balling my eyes out right now! Please give my love to Mike….its been sooooo long since I have seen either of you……I just love seeing all of your pictures on FB. You have an amazing outlook on life and what a wonderful family the two of you have raised together!
    Hopefully one day our paths will cross again…your home looks amazeballs…lol…I’m so jealous! Say hi to Mark and Sandy for me…they will always have a special spot in my heart!!….the one thing that sucks in a divorce is that you no longer are exposed to the great people that were truly special to you….All the best, xo Suzi

  45. Marie says:

    I just wanted to say thank you for this, even if it definitely made me tear up. I lost my father to renal cancer a couple of months before I turned twelve, and more than five years later it still hurts just as much. It’s worst during times of progression in my life, such as knowing that I will be graduating high school without him, and he won’t be here to threaten the boys in my life.
    But at the same time I have to thank his cancer for bettering our relationship, and letting me realize exactly how much he has helped to shape me and make me a better person. I will always be grateful for that, because it brought us together, but always resentful, because it tore us apart.
    Thank you very much for this heartwarming post.

    • Hello Marie ~
      It was absolutely lovely to read your comment. Because you get it. You get how cancer hurts… and you yet you get how much love it can also highlight in our lives. You must feel pretty great that you had those moments with your Dad. Wow tho, you were so young. There is never a good time or a good age to go through it all. The great news is that it sounds like he was a wonderful roadmap for you in your life too. Thank you so much for writing those words about being grateful and resentful. I totally understand every single word you wrote.
      With much love and many many hugs,
      Lynne xoxxo

  46. Wowzers that was beautiful. Dry my tears. So strong. Boyfriend and dog thoroughly hugged xxx thank you xxx

    • Ahhh Becky, you read more. Thanks for hanging out on my blog here too. xx And a cancer blog post too. Oh my. I hope I didn’t Debbie Downer YOU. ha! Well… at least your boyfriend and dog got a great hug out of it. That’s pretty epic. This world needs more hugs. xx

  47. Ada says:

    <3333333333333333 You are everything that is good in the world.

  48. Ang Eckensweiler says:

    OMG, I have to dry my tears, you got me….you are one amazingly strong woman, I am in awe. I have NOTHING to complain about, I have been fortunate,….my life now includes doing some epic shit, AND simply expressing some epic love to those I adore…..thanks for the wake up!

  49. CC says:

    I am a cancer research scientist with cancer in my family and all I can say is that I wish I could do more, and all I can do is volunteer my (tons of hours of) unpaid overtime, and to literally squash and kill cancer cells at work as a symbolic tribute to those I know and love. I say, “This is for Grandma! This is for Mom! This is for Auntie!” And so I squash them for you as well.

    • Susan says:

      Thank you!!!!

    • Wow…. goosebumps again today…You are incredible !!!!! A cancer research scientist? Seriously, you are lucky you are not standing in front of me, because I would full frontal smooch you. It is folks like you who work tirelessly to really move the dial on punching cancer in the face. Sending you a huge hug of gratitude !! You rock out loud.

      Lynne xx

      • CC says:

        Thank you Lynne, I would take the smooch and hugs with joy. Sometimes the long hours without huge breakthroughs is difficult. And my grandmother was just estimated to live another three weeks or so, with the same kind of cancer with which I work. It’s so frustrating, and I wish we researchers could do more, faster. But baby steps are still steps.

  50. Susan says:

    Dear Lynne;
    I was looking for info on how to create a mosaic when I saw that you and your family are going through what well may be the toughest challenge you’ve yet to encounter. I send you all what I think of as a “psychic warm blankie”; if I were able to, I’d wrap it snuggly around you all, tuck it in, and hold you all close to my heart, to protect you from the Cancer Monster.
    I was diagnosed in 2011- breast cancer. My life has always been rather upside down. I have to say that the worst part of it was having to tell my big, strong sons about the cancer. I did not want them to be afraid, and yet, there is no way to prevent fear when you utter that awful word. In fact, I would say that the fear cancer causes is the most debilitating effect of its toxic personality. All three of my sons, who are over 6 feet tall, strapping young men, broke down and cried. Maybe because I was choking on my own tears, and I couldn’t seem to keep them from splashing my boys, even though we are thousands of miles apart.
    I managed, somehow to beat this first round, Lynne. I’ve met people, since my diagnosis, who are on their 3rd or 4th round of a long fight, and though they may be tired, they are winning. I wish, with every fiber of my being, for your dear husband to be healed. You and your family are so beautiful. When I see the children of adults who are struggling to withstand cancer, I worry for them. I know you are all helping to hold each other up, and yet, I also know there are days when each of you secretly wonders how the hell you’re going to handle one more second of the fear.
    My worst moment, I think, was at a Christmas bazaar, with my mother and my best friend of 40 years. They were chatting and laughing at all of the cute and clever items for sale, and it was all I could do to swallow the lumps in my throat, because I couldn’t feel anything but empty, at that point.
    So, I went to my doctor the following week and got a nice prescription of antidepressant medication, which helped tremendously; it got me through my darkest moments so that I could persevere. And, 2 years later, I live to tell the tale.
    The hardest thing I have ever done was tell my family about my illness; the thought of dying didn’t affect me nearly as harshly as my sadness for them. I couldn’t bear to think of how they would feel about losing the person who was supposed to be there for them, well into their 50s or 60s.
    My perspective has changed a bit. I believe that most of what Americans value, the material stuff of life, is rather small and unimportant, and I don’t believe in worry or money anymore. Some things seem unreal to me, anymore.
    What is real, beyond the shadow of a doubt, is the soul; it is a form of energy that reaches out, far beyond the human body, to touch other souls. The body will break down and fall apart, someday, but the energy that comprises the soul, and the Divine Spirit that guides us all, lives on. Forever. It can neither be created, nor destroyed. It simply disperses or changes form, when the physical shell wears away.
    I know I am witnessing something of God whenever I see the innocent beauty of a baby, the kind, compassion of people like the pacifist monks in Thailand, and the unconditional love of an animal (my kitty nursed me through my cancer, and then she passed on). Sunsets, mountains, waterfalls, sandy beaches, dolphins, manatees, flowers, trees- all of these things remind me that Spirit is everywhere, and we are not ever alone.
    I wish you peace and joy, and again, comfort when you and your family are feeling the burden of your struggle with cancer. You will prevail. There will be more beautiful moments for all of you. And you will all be together, at the end of life’s rainbow. I promise.
    If you ever need a shoulder to lean on, I’m here for you. Though there are many miles between us, I’m only a keyboard away :)
    Love, Susan

    • Hello Susan,

      Something happened. I was speechless. It took me days to really read over your note, and take it in. I kept going back to it and reading it again and again. I just LOVED it. Wow, could I feel your “warm blanket” of warmth… and I hope that so many others read your words too. You are so beautifully eloquent. I usually drop F-bombs when I talk about cancer, and you are so well behaved. LOL. xx

      I completely related to telling your sons about the cancer. I was a puddle of tears and literally couldn’t keep it together when we talked to the kids about Michael’s cancer. It has taken me years to really reflect and talk about it without crying at the drop of a hat.

      I hope you continue to write your words & perspective about cancer. It gave me goosebumps. It really did. From my keyboard to yours… I am sending you healing love and beautiful energy. You are a beautiful soul and I am so happy that you found me.

      Much love… to the moon and back again…

      Lynne xx

  51. Kerry Phillips, Maui, HI says:

    Thank you for sharing your story with me. I have cancer (cholangiocarcinoma) and I was feeling shitty so I Googled “I hate cancer”. It brought me to your blog and was exactly what i needed to read. So Thank you for bringing me here….but just so you know cancer, I still hate you.
    Kerry Phillips
    Maui, HI

    • Ahhh, for crying out loud, you are right Kerry. I don’t blame your for hating on cancer. I hope you find the beauty in some of the experiences that come about from cancer too. In the meantime… I already think you are pretty spectacular for googling the words I hate cancer. Great minds think alike :)

      Sending you hugs across the pond from Canada to Hawaii. Many hugs indeed. Much love, Lynne xx

  52. Maighen says:

    Well, I found your site from a link on Treehugger (they were ogling your fab treehouse, natch), but I looked deeper when I saw the current topic of our own family floating around the pages: cancer. My mom is in the second round of chemo + a trial drug for Primary Peritoneal Carcinoma (nearly identical to the most common form of ovarian CA since they share tissue types, but much more rare), and this is her second battle with the beast. She was given radiation for cervical cancer when I was 11, and now 20+ years later she’s dealing with a cancer that may have been caused by the very radiation that had once saved her life. Figures, eh? Ain’t life all ironical and s#!te?!

    Needless to say, we recently celebrated her 71st birthday at a local spring “Germanfest” by noshing massive amounts of things ending in “-wurst” and drinking a plethora beers with umlauts in their names while watching full grown men hop around in their shorty-shorts and overalls to an oopma-loopma sounding band. Not a bad way to tell cancer to eff off if I do say so myself. She’s the youngest looking/acting/feeling 71yr old I know (and I know a lot being an ER nurse aka pit-stop crew boss for those traveling the never ending left turns of life), and even with all the crap she’s handling she never ceases to amaze me. We know all about that cancer roulette in our house since she was diagnosed just 4 short months after my long-awaited son was born, and I do mean long.. we tried for 7 years and had given up on infertility treatments when I found out I wouldn’t be delivering a bad gallbladder but a baby in 6 short months. SURPRISE! Ironically I’m adopted because my mom never got pregnant (trust me, there were lots of accusations of her sharing the “barren gene” in my formula there for a while! Ha!), but he truly has been the best medicine for her these past 14 months. Best for all of us, actually.

    My sincerest hope is that my baby boy gets to remember my mom, because I never knew it was possible for two people who aren’t lovers to truly, madly, deeply adore each other the way my son and mom do one another. Their eyes light up the entire room when they’re playing with each other, and my son practically has a spastic fit every time we take him to visit his beloved Nana, running through the front door clapping his hands wildly and screeching in his little baby voice his excitement to see her again. If I could capture that energy, that spirit and keep it in a bottle for him I would cross oceans of space and time to find the contraption necessary to procure and encapsulate it so he remembers her completely.

    I just realized as I sit here bawling and typing feverishly to a complete stranger that the only time I ever let myself cry about my mom is when my boy is asleep and my husband is out of town like he is tonight. I’m not sure if that’s a good or bad thing, but it is definitely a releasing thing this time around. :) Many long, happy, memory-filled decades to your husband, you children, and you. I have a sleeping baby I must go snuggle post haste!

    -Maighen

  53. J.ulia says:

    Wow you are amazing! my husband has a very unfriendly throat cancer who apparently likes to keep visiting and outstayiing his welcome 3 months post treatment waiting on results of abnormalities shit bum bolllocks. Tonight was almost choking on keeping it together and read your blog. So refreshingly honest and true. Bless you for your pain and strength there you get me and my cancer liberation of expression.. I love love love your blog you are fantastic julia xxxxx

    • Thanks soooo much Julia !! You made my day. My week. My month :). Really !

      So sorry to hear that your hubby has cancer too. Sometimes the WAITING on the results can be more painful than the results. It is excruciating to wait, isn’t it? I hope you and your hubs kick cancer in the ass. That is what it deserves. A swift kicker to the curb.

      You go girl ! Big girly hugs !! xx

  54. Ann W. Long says:

    I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009. Had all the treatments chemo radiation and herceptin. Many fabulous people have crossed my path with cancer driving their life’s journey. I think I have been one of the lucky ones. I am still here and I have found everything matters…verses my old attitude that nothing matters. I stumbled on your blog wanting to make the grapevine “balls”. Then I continued to read. If it isn’t fun “I am not going to do it….” lots of new words from you to describe my new journey. Have fun- live big -live better……now finding a way to live with epic ideas. I love to do everything!!! Like you! I learned to loose myself in Pintrest also! Lists of things to make!!!! God speed to your husband. I can tell he will live long with all the love surrounding him.. Another list: :pray for the crazy loving creative Canadian family and their Daddy. God speed from Tennessee. Ann

    • Dear Ann

      I loved love loved loved your note/comment. What a great journey you are on too. It is nuts how cancer can change your perspective… even if you had a great one to begin with.

      Opening our eyes and hearts to the fun of it all is where it’s at. It isn’t always easy. Sometimes we cry, sometimes we have a downright pity party, but in the end.. we try to have some fun.

      Thank you so much for sending the love and prayers. Right back-atcha from one Canuck to a lovely awesome gal in Tennessee. They sure make great folks in Tennessee :)

      Much love,
      Lynne !

  55. kiMMer says:

    Yer GREAT Lynne ….. What a beautiful page ! I am going through the same process now (semi). They say my Cancer is gone for now. The Oncologist says it is the first time in his 16 year career that he has seen my heavy Chemo treatment get rid of the cancer i had. I had a golf ball sized tumour in my colon, which had spread to my Liver and Stomach. It was a combination of 2 cancers at the same time, joined into one tumour. It only happens to .025% of Cancer patients and my Doc had never seen it before. I was dead, so they told me. Chemo SUCKZ every 2 weeks for 4 hours. Plus feeling like a friggin’ Zombie without a brain, pukin’, never a smile on my face, the words SMILE + LAUGH were gone from my vocabulary. Plus being alone, since my Mom had died half way through my treatment due to a Staph infection from her breast cancer and my father wouldn’t go near the hospital because he missed her SO much. So i had to sit in that friggin’ chair knowing that i was going to die. What a shitEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE feeling !!! I could have used someone like you around, that’s for certain !!!!

    But, i’m still here for now !!!! Yah, life can really be a BLAST eh !!!!!!

    I know your pain ! But you are SO great to cope with things like this. You were ALWAYS very special to me ( even though U sucked as a cocktail waitress [just jokin'] ).

    Love Ya Babe,

    kiMMer

    Use my email address @ kim@bluemoongraffix.com

    P.S. Your kids are gorgeous, just like yourself …..

  56. Rhonda Blouin says:

    Just wanted to say thanks for your insightful words. I’ve been trying to read up on what to do or not do, say or not say…my mom has cancer for the second time. Bladder cancer the first time, which she overcame. Now they found a new cancer & the prognosis so far is stage 3 Lymphoma. Anyway…of all the things I’ve read your words helped the most. You put it all in such a warm & candid way that it was like getting a big hug, which I really needed right now. You helped me see that it’s ok to not have all the right things to say & that some of the things I thought I was supposed to say, may be all the wrong things. So…thank you. I hope to read more of you stuff.

    • Hello Rhonda,
      I am so happy that my words gave you a hug. I suppose that I just sounded dorky by saying that… but I get it. I get what you are going through. There are no right words to say… Sending you love, peace, happiness and healing through your journey with your Mom. Your Mom is lucky to have you in her life. I am sure she sees your inner beauty every-single-day. BIG hugs, big epic {{ hugs }} to you and your Mom. Lynne xx

      • Rhonda Blouin says:

        Hello Lynne,
        It’s been a couple months now since I wrote this. They actually ended up finding more cancer cells in my mom’s bone marrow & spinal fluid so her treatment needed to be a bit more intense. She has to have Methotrexate infusions, requiring a 4 day hospital stay, in between the chemotherapy. It’s been a little tougher but has paid off. After only round 2 the PET scan showed the Lymphoma was gone & then the spinal tap came back negative. Woot-Woot! She’s responding much better than we anticipated. She will have to finish out 6 rounds each of the Methotrexate & chemo. of course, ending mid August. But, ~~~BIG SIGH~~~ She is kicking this cancer’s butt! Thanks for all your words of wisdom & support. {{{Hugs to you}}} Rhonda

        • Wow! Wow! Wow! Rhonda!
          Your Mom sure served cancer a can of whoop ass! The Lymphoma is gone?!!! Seriously, I just got goosebumps from head to toe. They are likely continuing to give her chemo to be sure to catch any cells that may have wandered off in an effort to make havoc. I hope you have a big fat celebration in August and send me a note !!! Whoop whoop for your Momma !!! I am doing the happy dance all over the treehouse right now. Yipppppeeeeeee!!! Lynne xx

  57. Yetunde says:

    I found your website quite by accident at this moment that I sit here in a way experiencing my own version of a cancer story. That’s how scared I am of the C-word, I have to distance myself from it by not saying it’s my story.
    I am getting ready to leave to visit my Aunt, the closest thing I have had to a mother figure. She is in the last days of her battle with cancer. I am so terrified to see her. I have been terrified ever since she was first diagnosed 14 years ago. Yes, that is a looong time. She was well for about 5 years, and just like the monkey on her back, it shitted on her shirt when no one was looking. So she fought as hard as she could. You name it,s he has tried it, and nope, none of it is saving her.
    I was so heartened to hear you voice what must be so frustrating to anyone impacted by this horrible disease. If only people understood that there is just no rhyme, no reason. It strikes if it wants, and takes a life if it wants, whether you are a walking ray of sunshine, the biggest health nut of all, or spend every moment of your life praying.
    I quake at the thought of having cancer being so prominent in my family history. I CAN. NOT. fathom it. And to see you soldiering on with this joie de vivre in the face of it is nothing short of astonishing.

    • Hello Yetunde,
      Thank you for your kind words & wow !!!!! what a journey you are going through with your Auntie. She sounds like a beautiful soul, and I wish you all the love in the world to help you through the cancer journey. It sounds like you do embrace the goodness along the way, and feel the sadness of what cancer does. That is real. It is raw and it brings out so many emotions that you didn’t even know you had. Hang in there and remember that those wee quiet moments with your Aunt will be forever in your heart. You will carry them with you always. Much love to you. Lynne xx

  58. Batchy Hasty says:

    I was riveted to your blog. Can’t say I enjoyed it because Im going on a cancer journey
    with my sister. She has lung cancer that has spread through out her whole body.
    We go to MD Anderson Hospital all the time.
    This was a big whopper in her life, but it has truly blessed our journey together.
    Her faith and my love are stronger than ever.
    Please look at my “Cancer Journey” board on Pintrist. It has become more then Me
    recording thought and feeling moments. It has become my sisters time alone.
    She has a hard time allowing anyone to take control and to take care of her, but
    has learned that I am just as strong as her and can take care of her needs
    physically, emotionally and with joy even when exhausted.
    I love her so much and I have ask God, but once, for nothing less than a cure. My sister, Dory, has asked for one more year.
    Thank you for your blog >

  59. Sue says:

    Hi there

    I’ve been casually following you for a while but just finally tiptoed into the cancer stuff as I’ve kind of wanted to stay away from it. I am blown away to discover that your Michael has WM—my mother was diagnosed about three years ago (took them quite a while to figure out what she had). She’s doing OK, (fingers crossed!) went through a treatment cycle a year ago that made a huge difference. It’s a very strange disease, but there’s some pretty exciting research being done now at Harvard’s Dana Farber Cancer center. (I’m on a talklist-there are lots of folks on it who were diagnosed a lot longer than 5 years ago! )
    I’m sending you all my best for the best possible outcome of many, many more years. (hugs!)

    • Sue says:

      Oh, wait, so are you! I just saw your post. I guess I’ll see you over there, too. :) I lurk, I don’t post there. I follow it for my mom who is not too into computer stuff.

    • Hi Sue,
      Yes, we love the talk list too. We read it all the time. It is absolutely, mind-blowingly incredible to watch the medical advances that they have been making for WM over the past 5 years. Michael has also been under the care of Steve Treon from Harvard’s Dana Farber – and wow oh wow….what a place that is. Steve is an epic doctor for WM. When Michael was first diagnosed the survival rate was much lower then. It has been getting better and better with all the medical advances.

      I am so happy to hear that your Mom is doing well after treatment. It is a scary process to go thru, isn’t it? Michael got sooo sick…we had no choice but for him to do chemo. Without it, he would have died. For that, I am thankful. It forced us to make a choice for him to do chemo. For some reason, it makes the choice so much easier when the only other alternative is to fly in the sky with the birds.

      Much love, peace, happiness and healing.

      Lynne xx

      • Sue says:

        We’ve been to some seminars and talks and we were lucky enough to hear Dr. Treon speak to a nice small group last year. You are very fortunate to have been able to see him as a patient.
        It *is* scary to watch the treatment-my mom is over 80 and so is kind of delicate and she had a tough time with it. I am hoping that she will hold steady for several years and not need anything more–fingers crossed really hard……
        My mom isn’t generally someone who has lots of positive sayings around, but one thing she’s said is that for her, this cancer is just something you live with, and you take it as it comes. I think that’s one of the blessings of this form of cancer-it does give you time to catch your breath, look around and see the world, live each day and each minute, and with the newer treatments some really good opportunities for many good years.
        Many, many warm wishes for long lasting success and health..
        hugs,
        Sue

  60. Lydia says:

    wOw!
    Cancer is a dirty, 6 letter word that I rarely speak out loud (JINX!)..I avoid reading about it, and hearing about it. That is my equivalent of, holding one’s breath when driving past a graveyard.. I find Cancer creepy, scary, evil, unforgiving, and blind. This was a difficult thing for me to read but there was so much raw beauty….I haled and made it (past the graveyard). Realistic and unsweetened, Your words are the words of a hero’ I think you come from a famly of them.. Thank you for sharing, thank you for speaking…..It takes some of the air out of the beast!
    ~L~

    • ahhh Lydia,
      That is exactly how I feel some days. The difference for me, with graveyards, is that every time I drive past one, I think of a joke my Dad used to tell me….the old classic joke…” Look at that graveyard, people are just dying to get there”. Stupid joke, huh? Well, I thought it was funny as a kid…haha..and now it somehow makes me chuckle a little bit more when I miss my Dad.

  61. Patty says:

    What an awesome kick ass story on cancer, I have family ,fiends going about cancer and there are not ever any right words, but I do pray. Thanks for sharing your site. Love be to you & your family *)*

  62. Lynne, You made me laugh and cry all at the same time. Your life experiences, your perspective and your post are simply……. profound. I can imagine how difficult it was to put some of that ‘out there’ but I agree with you completely. If things like having a super strong spiritual faith, being a vegetarian, never drinking or smoking and taking all the right supplements, means they can save you-my dear dad would have survived long past the age of 75 when he died of cancer. He had an intense headache just before the holidays in 2008 and, despite certain tests missing it completely, he was diagnosed with lung cancer that had metastasized EVERYWHERE….listening to the results of his pet scan were stunning. We spent Christmas in the hospital that year and he died January 4-just 19 days after diagnosis. You are so right, grief never goes away, but we learn to live with it. And I agree, there is no rhyme or reason to who gets cancer or why some prayers are answered and some are not…….we’ve just got to LIVE LIFE–every moment. Thank you for sharing this intimate look into your life and journey.
    Here’s to living life,
    Heather
    http://www.stylemindchic.blogspot.com

  63. Courtney says:

    wow. This is quite a post. Very moving, and it will help a lot of people to deal with something that is hard to talk about. Im glad your husband is doing so well, Lynne. You and your family are fighters and it works. yay! xx

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thanks Courtney !
      So funny that we both use that JINX word, if you know what I mean. Thanks for popping by and checking out my blog. I was luvin’ your blog all last week too ! Epic hugs ~ Lynne xx

  64. alicia says:

    I really enjoyed reading your words and looking at these pictures.
    My journey is just starting. December 26th 2012, my finance told me the results of the biopsy he had done a few days earlier. Metastatic Melanoma. We are in stage IV. Radiation has begun on his back, radio-surgery has been done on his brain tumor and loads of doctor visits and tests have been done. I know that this is only the beginning. I hope this is the beginning of a long journey and not a short one. Your story has enough in it for me to realize some scary facts and see the need for humor. Thanks for sharing. Hope to you and yours…

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hello Alicia
      One BIG BIG BIG thing that I have learned from this experience is to get a copy of all his medical reports. Every single time. At every visit. It is free, and it is our legal right. The reason I say that, is that it is so difficult to process every word that a doctor says and to really understand what the cancer is all about. After you leave the office, you can google things on the reports and really understand it. I don’t mean DR. GOOGLE, I just mean gaining knowledge from the facts. Knowledge is power.
      KNOWLEDGE IS POWER. I had to say that again. LOL.
      I wish you peace, love and healing on your journey. I wrote about cancer today in the blog post today…not sure if you saw this one…but here it is just in case you didn’t see it already.

      http://www.lynneknowlton.com/hey-cancer-heres-a-can-of-whoop-ass-open-it/

      Much love to you both. Big big big LOVE

      Lynne xx

  65. Caron says:

    This was the first blog post I have read of yours and wanted to say thank you for sharing. Over the past 12 months, I have lost too many friends and colleagues to cancer – it wasn’t a good year. On top of that, my father has been battling cancer but we are hopeful. This post is a reminder to take that step back and be thankful for those you treasure and have lost xo

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Helloooo Caron
      Nice to meet you…and I am so happy that you read my blog post. I am always grateful for that ! xx

      I am soooo sorry that you lost so many to cancer this year. Cancer is a mother-f*&K*r. Pardon my french. It is just soooo grrrrrhhhh to lose such beautiful souls in our lives. Your Dad has cancer? What kind does he have?

      Thanks again for reading. It keeps me inspired to keep writing.

      Big hugs,
      Lynne x

      • Caron says:

        Hi Lynne – its always a pleasure to discover fabulous new blogs – you have a new fan here! Also, thank you for the response – that is really appreciated. The day I wrote – a colleague had passed so your words brought much comfort. My father has prostate cancer – 2nd time, the first time it was caught early and symptons mild (if you can call it that) and treated through chemo but it has returned and they have to be more aggresive.. He is coping well and we are positive. Thank you for asking..

        Anyhow, I look forward to sharing your many journeys ahead,, you are a special soul. xo

  66. Sharon says:

    Wow! what an amazing blog you wrote on your cancer experiences, and how very sad that so many great people in your family werr taken by this horendous disease. It takes a positive attitude to get through life let alone something like yiour family endures every single day.

    I wish I had the positiveness and the lust for life as you did, but I cannot get out of this funk. I lost my son, not to cancer but to Duchennes Muscualr Dytrophy 7 years ago, and I am still in a funk. I havethis email address for him as thats how he was, yet I annot live up to it. every time I write it I feel like such a failure to him. I want todo so much and acomplish more, but I am stuck…I am afraid. Maybe I am afraid to live becasue he cannot…. thank you for posting this amazing blog. And again my heart goe out to you and yor family.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Dear Sharon,
      I am soooooo sorry for the loss of your son. I completely understand how difficult it is to write, and to share your thoughts about his loss.

      He was your son…you will NEVER be a failure to him. That is what unconditional love is all about.

      Writing can be so very therapeutic. Take one step after another toward living a happy life..it is something your son would want for you…even if they feel like baby steps….just one foot in front of the other. Abundance of love is all around you. Just when you least expect it.

      Sending you peace, love and healing…from the bottom of my heart. I am so very sorry for your loss.

      Lynne xx

  67. Maureen says:

    Thanks. I needed this. Not really. Or maybe so.? I can’t laugh most days but every once in a while we get one together. My husband is a survivor of non-hodgkins lymphoma diagnosed in the late 70s. Back then, less than 10% survived. He did. He is a wonderful father. He loves me more than anyone. And me him. Now he has colorectal cancer diagnosed — wow, 2 years? Sometimes seems like it just happened. Went in for his first colonoscopy (late, not at age 50 as rec) and found a HUGE tumor. As in, couldn’t even do the exam bc the tumor was so big. Surgery, chemo. Looking good!!!! Then crap — here it is again, wrapping around his sacrum. Radiation, surgery, radiation in surgery when he’s lying there open on the table, and everyone leaves — including anesthesia — they leave him open on the table and radiate him during surgery. Then more chemo. An iliostomy. TPN which is liquid nutrition i mix and hook up every 12 hours directly into his major vein Home health care (turned out to be a lady whose kids i babysat 30+ years ago, in a town 100 milesvaway). Iliostomy followed by a reversal about 8 months later. We think, ok. We can do this. Everything new, every turn, we think ok. It’s going to get better. It could be worse. Even with all the shit (literally) and food issues and bowel retraining (a nicer way of not saying bowel incontinence) I say, I can do this. We say, we can do this. Found out just before Christmas it’s metastized to his lungs. Not a damn thing they can do right now bc he’s too weak. My wonderful, strong, protect-us-with-his-last-dying-breath husband, 6’4″ is down to 120 lbs. He looks like he came out of Auschwitz.. I’ve been to Auschwitz and Dachau and I don’t say this lightly or to offend. My husband is starving to death in a house full of food.. Because almost everything he eats runs through him. Still. He s the kind of guy who bought me a Mac laptop for Christmas bc I’m not that computer savvy and “this is easier for you bc I’m not going to be here to help you.”. We told our daughter. She’s 22, still in college. Her response, “I’m never getting married. If dad can’t walk me down the aisle, I’m never getting married.”. And at this point, I’m not sure which of these I’m sadder about. It all sucks. And she’s mad that he didn’t get his first colonoscopy earlier. When he was 50. She knows it doesn’t prevent cancer to get a colonoscopy but maybe it would have been found earlier. Before it escaped the bowel and entered the lymph nodes. Before it was so damn big. And she’s right. Maybe he will live to walk her down the aisle. Stranger things have happened. In fact, he survived non-hodgkins lymphoma when almost no one did. And you know what.? My brother went for his first colonoscopy, at age 50, and they found pre-cancerous polyps. His dr told him that the kind they are have a strong genetic component so all his siblings — of whom I’m one — should have early colonoscopies bc if you find them and remove thm early there’s usually nothing more to it. I am 50 and I have not had a colonoscopy. I don’t want to know. I don’t want my husband hearing anything remotely like I heard that day 2 years ago. But I will have a friend take me and I will go and have my test bc if cancer is waiting for me somewhere down the line .. . . I have no ending for this sentence. It’s scary enough already.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Dear Maureen,
      Thank you so much for writing and sharing your story. It took me a while to respond, because it landed right in my heart. There are no easy words to express what you must be going through. No right words. Nothing.

      I feel that you are so lucky to have such a beautiful soul of a hubby and you seem to embrace that with everything you’ve got. That is what matters. That is what will help you to get through all of this.

      Sending you HUGE {[HUGS]} OF LOVE and support!
      Lynne xx

  68. Aubrey says:

    Thank you for your honesty. My Dad was diagnosed with a bone cancer, Chrondosarcoma, in early October 2012. I thought at the time that it was devastating just to hear the c-word. I cried just about every way you described was possible. I’ve never hidden my live or feelings from my Dad, but I did hug tighter every time I saw him. This cancer escaped the bone and created a tumor that wrapped around the L1 vertebrae. It had completely encased the bone, grown it’s own blood vessels and also grown around the main artery leading to the right kidney. We put full trust in his doctor and I wouldn’t change opting for surgery in November 2012, especially considering how quickly the tumor was growing. I and my family spent 2 entire days in the surgical ward while he underwent almost 14 hours of surgery. It is amazing the things modern science can do like removing and replacing a vertebrae and having a man standing up a day after surgery. I was lucky enough to stay at the hospital with him for 10 days until my Mom was well enough to take my place. Despite the doctors reminding us what an enormous and severe surgery this was, my Dad was progressing. He was staying in the hospital for almost a month and was finally given a target date to come home for care there. My sisters flew in from out of state for Christmas. My Dad had been moved to the rehab unit so he was able to see his grandchildren finally too. But on the evening of December 20, 2012 we lost him. I couldn’t believe I had ever used the word “devastating” to describe anything because I truly never knew its real meaning and depth. You’re right, you can go through such emotion and my God, it sucks! But he loved his life and us and we knew it because actions speak louder than words. But again, I thank you for this post. I needed this. I needed to read this and be reminded because I do feel like I am alone. While his story ended abruptly (unfairly) I have memories and love and I will live for him. So thank you and keep it up. I can’t imagine how hard it was to write this out and want you to know how much it meant to me.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Dear Aubrey,
      I sure had to grab a great big box of kleenex when I read the words that you ‘lost your dad’. I am speechless. I get what you are going through. Totally get it. I am soooooooo sorry that he passed away and I am so grateful that he lived a life so full of love. It sounds like you had it all with him. How epic, awesome was that ?! So beautiful !!
      I wish you healing, and love…and all the support you could possibly get. It is a tough road to walk down after you lose your Dad. All I can think about is what a good friend told me…mourning doesn’t get EASIER, it just CHANGES. I hope that helps you too.
      Sending you love and hugs,
      Lynne xx

  69. Cathy says:

    Thank you.

  70. rjvnz says:

    Dear Lynne,

    I just tumbled upon this post while reading some DIY stuff online! Your style of writing made me laugh, the meaning of your words made me cry and broke my heart all over again. I lost my beloved dad to pancreatic cancer last year. My dad was a beautiful soul, the most amazing dad any child could ask for (according to me). Me (24), my mom, and my little brother (only 17) live in New Zealand. We have no history of cancer in 9 generations either side… He was perfectly healthy. Mom and dad celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary in India. The love between my parents was the divine kind. One you see rarely. They could not breathe without each other…

    After their return from India, he suddenly started losing weight. He lost about 35kgs of weight in 2 months and we were like SHIT something is wrong. Bloody doctor said he has high diabetes and gave him a million tablets. My dad procrastinated from going to the hospital as my engagement was due and he didn’t want to get some bad news (can you believe it?). 2 weeks after my engagement, dad started suffering like crazy. We hospitalised him.. Then the earth cracked under our feet as a panel of doctors told him and mom that he had last stage cancer. My dad’s response to the worst possible news was “I am thankful that God considered me worthy of this ordeal”…

    We did EVERYTHING for him. Ayurveda, homeopathy, saint’s medicines, holy ashes, you name it. If some thug gave us dust and said it would cure him, we did that too. My dad never smoked, drank alcohol, worshiped God all day, lived the most ascetic life, never ate junk food, HECK he never even ate pizza! All he ate was fresh food that mom cooked for him 24/7. We failed to understand how the hell it happened… I fought with the doctors and had him on the first flight to India in 24 hours as top doctors there still gave us hope. Out entire family also lives there. My dad was the youngest of 2 brothers and 4 sisters. We were all so positive. We never said even once to dad that what if he doesn’t make it. He never cried, we never cried. Not once. We stayed by him all the time. With no chemo/intense medication, he shrunk his cancer in his last ultrasound report. Purely by his positivity and will to live. (Doctors in NZ said to him “you might as well go and live the rest of your days out in a hospice. You don’t have long”. Their response to him saying that he’s positive was “positivity is of no use, you should know what’s going on inside you”) He lived 51 days after his diagnosis. He was 50 years old going on 51. He died chanting God’s name. My brother flew all alone for 38 hours and came to his dead body to carry out the final rites. Me and my little brother took his ashes to the Himalayas where we knew he would have wanted to rest. I dare not convey what my mother was going through but I’d say that she is the most remarkably courageous and strong woman I have ever known. My hand shakes and heart aches as I relate the pain of how we passed through that phase. I pray that no children our age nor a young wife should ever have to go through that.

    My dad was exactly to me as your dad was to you. My whole world. I saw myself, my strengths and potential through his eyes. Somedays, it’s hard not to feel lost without his guidance…I thought I’d share my story as it has been the most difficult time of my life and all the memories came flooding back like the dam holding them had just cracked. Me being the older sister and only daughter (although I was more of a son to my parents) makes it hard to ever truly express the heartbreak as I have to “hold it together”. I just wanted to say that I feel every word you said. The “why did this happen” question will haunt us for the rest of our lives. But your post reinforced the fact that we should never lose hope as that’s all we have…

    Thank you for slapping cancer in the face. I admire yours and Michael’s strength and courage. God bless you and your family.

    Kind Regards,

    A fellow sufferer

    (pardon me for not writing my real name in the post… This pain is a plague that affects my family, not just me. I speak on behalf of everyone who has gone through this kind of pain)

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      I am so very thankful that you shared your story. So very thankful. The love that you had and will always have for your Dad is remarkably beautiful. What a beautiful soul. It must have been so very difficult to write the words, but I am grateful that you did. I have learned that mourning the loss of someone so dear to your heart never gets easy…it just changes. Your Dad is with you every single day in your heart.
      Like you, I have come to cherish those memories and take the positive energy with me…everywhere I go.
      I wish you peace, love and healing.
      With light and love,
      Lynne xx
      Thank you, again, for writing. Your comment really touched my heart.

  71. Micah says:

    So like others I came across you blog through the awesome world of pinterest. I started snooping and found this post of yours. I cried while reading through it and have no words for how this blessed me. My husband and I are currently sitting at his parents house while his mother is fighting hard, while cancer is being an ass about it. We are down to days but this post blessed me. Shit happens and cancer sucks. Your writing is awesome and I thank you for who you are. I pray blessings over you and your family and God continues to give you strength.! Kick that camcer’s ass!!!!
    Thank you

  72. Rhonda says:

    Hi Lynne…

    I stumbled across your blog through my nightly addiction that is Pinterest. After reading your post about barn door hardware…and smiling at your smart and easy humor, I couldn’t help but snoop through your other posts where I read about your loved ones’ fights with cancer…which ultimately is yours too. I have no wise words and nothing in my world to even compare to what you and your family have suffered. But know that I, and anyone else fortunate enough to read your story, are on the sidelines cheering for your husband, your children and for you. Thank you for reminding me to hug those I love just a little longer.

    In my thoughts,
    Rhonda

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Rhonda,
      You should know that comments like yours are the ones that keep me smiling- fighting- loving life….It amazes me every-single-day…how many beautiful FRIENDS I have out there in the blog world. You really touched my heart, and I THANK YOU for that. xx

  73. becky lyzen says:

    And I have long known it was a pain in the ass that saved my life. I never wanted anyone to feel sorry for me and made me appreciate me. It forced me off the career treadmill I thought was so important… I had so little energy and time, but more time for my kids and I figured out PDQ what mattered most and l live that way to this day… 12 years cancer free… thank you Cancer for giving me my life back.

    Thank you Lynne for taking the time to write this blog.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thank YOU Becky for sharing your story. It gives me goosebumps to hear how cancer gave you your life back. Happily, I can relate. You sound like a beautiful soul and I am sooooooo happy that you are still happily walking this gorgeous earth, spending time with friends and family. {{HUGS}} Lynne xx

  74. Christine says:

    I stumbled across your blog via Pinterest. This post is beautifully written; dripping with emotion and honesty. Thank you for sharing, :)

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hello Christine !
      So sorry for the late reply to your comment. Thank you for visiting my blog !! The cancer blog post was great ‘therapy’ LOL, and I am so happy that you came along and read it. It really feels great that I can touch the lives of so many people and yet also sad….since so many people are touched by cancer.
      All the best to you in the New year.
      Cheers &
      Happy New Year to you !
      Much love,
      Lynne

  75. Wendy says:

    Great writing. You’ve embodied it all….and it rings as truth to those of us who have lost. One thing that has remained for me, after all the loss, is real truth. Not the “truth” civilians believe….but real truth…when you’ve looked death in the eye and it takes all you have and you keep on truckin’ anyway through the tears and snot and darkenss…and you keep the beauty of living alive…THAT truth. Thanks for speaking that. Love and blessings and strength to you, your man and your babes.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thank you Wendy. The REAL TRUTH, the real deal, the real down low on cancer is truly where the rubber meets the road. Thanks for writing to me and thank you so very much for the love and blessings.
      Much love
      Lynne xx

  76. Vikki says:

    Hi Lynne,

    I came across your blog while doing research on barn doors for a bathroom DIY I’m planning. Thanks for all the details on that by the way, I’ll check my hardware store to see if I can get the stuff together and if not, I may just have to check in with The Duke.

    Just wanted to give you and Michael a big fat hug *SQUEEZE* and send you guys bucket loads of love, (uh oh, the L word…to strangers…I’ve just outdone myself there. I digress), and I’ll pray some of my best prayers for you guys. I believe in miracles and whether it’s the unexplainable, beyond our comprehension kind or the stem cell banking ones of modern medicine, I hope they’re lots and lots in store for your family.

    Sending you some sunshine from beautiful Barbados!!!

    Vikki

    P.S. Michael is seriously hotttttt. Like a Trinidad Moruga Scorpion chile pepper hot. I’m sorry, don’t mean to ogle your hubby but in my defense, I have 20/20 vision! (but even legally blind, in the dark – okay you get the point. Mazel tov)

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Vikki
      You are absolutely hilarious !!!!!! Chile pepper hot. hahaaaaaa.
      And— and— and —- you are writing to me from Barbados ? Oh my oh my, one of my favourite places on earth. You lucky hot diggity dawg.
      Sending big squeezes right back atcha.
      I hope you come back time and time again to the blog – SUBSCRIBE !!- so I can live my sunshine life through you in Barbados.
      Much love
      Lynne xx

      • Vikki says:

        Lynne I would trade places with you! You were on to something when you said hot diggity, It’s scorching!

        I will definitely subscribe!

        Take care :o)

  77. Lynn says:

    Loved this and thank you! So far I have lived with “Cancer” for 12 years. For now I am free of it and living life the way I want to.

    When I go for my yearly check up’s I sit in the waiting rooms and people will start talking to me. Newly diagnosed patients, people also there for a yearly check up, etc. I NEVER ever say “It’s ok, you’ll be fine” because once you have walked this road you are NEVER the same.

    I had breast cancer. I will never ever be the same. I HATE cancer, it has taken many from me, but I love what it has done for me also. It has taught me lessons about living.

    Thank you for this blog Lynne <3 Peace…..

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Lynn
      Ohhhh how I love your name :) Thank you so much for sharing your story. It is incredible, how one NEVER FEELS THE SAME again…on so many levels of craziness. You are right tho- the lessons in life that come from cancer- wowsers. It would be great to learn those lessons in other ways, wouldn’t it? Big love to you !!! Lynne xx

  78. Hi!
    I was the Canadian doctor that sat with you and Joe (the Spartan guy) and the lady who lost 200 pounds at lunch during UPW. I am so glad that I checked out your website AND… I live close to you. I was from Port Elgin and now in South Barrie. I loved your energy and your husbands!! Find me a man like him, will ya? I had one but he was a lawyer – nuff said. :) My cell is 705-718-5340 in case you feel the need for shopping and tea therapy in Barrie. Or laser hair removal or something…
    Love it – I will follow you girl !
    Debbie
    “living with gratitude”

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Debbie,

      My girlfriend just read your comment and said “I want to lose 200 lbs at lunch too !!” CRACK ME UP. LOL !

      …on the hunt for a hawt guy for you….oh the things I have to do…..

      hahahahaa
      Lynne xx

  79. Cameron Von St. James says:

    Hi,

    I loved this post! I have a quick question about your blog, would you mind emailing me when you get a chance?

    Thanks,

    Cameron

  80. C Mac says:

    I am a 10 year cancer survivor but was just diagnosed yesterday with mesothelioma.

    I have started to document my journey but I wish I had your amazing talent. You will never know how reading your blog cheered me up today. Mind you it also made me feel sad for your family but full of admiration. Where do people find the strength?

    Thank you again. I didn’t reach out 10 years ago but feel the need now. I am glad I did and that I found your blog. Keep writing! C.M.

  81. Renee says:

    What a post and a story. Moving and heartfelt. It is tragic anyone has to go through cancer and the awful treatments that go along with fighting it. I have lost family and friends to it and know people who are battling it today. So sad. I can only hope there will be a cure found soon.

  82. Dara says:

    Hello Lynne. Kim B sent me over here and I’m so glad I clicked. Cancer is a horrific bitch but I am so inspired and humbled by your optimism and humor. I’m currently living through this with my mother and really need the pick me up. Thank you.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Dara
      Thanks for the reminder that Kim B sent you. She better look out, I am going to SMOOCH HER, when she isn’t looking :)
      I wish you many EPIC MOMENTS of awesomeness with your MOM. I completely understand what you must be going through. Sending you *virtual hugs*.
      Much love
      Lynne

  83. Liz says:

    Kim B sent me your way…and she never steers me wrong. Boy, do you have a gift…seeing the good in the bad….it humbles and inspires me. I worked as an oncology RN before kids and had WM patients….along with all the other “liquid tumors” as we called them back in the day. Fast forward many years and my 40+ y/o BIL was diagnosed with RAEB…preleukemia…and went through induction and a successful non-related stem cell transplant. He’s still going strong. I’ll keep you all in my good thoughts and prayers. Keep up the fight…and make sure to continue balancing the tears with smiles and laughter.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Liz,
      Kim B sent you? Ohhhh my, she is HILARIOUS. I love her ! I also love your email address…it made me laugh out loud !! Wowsers…what a great comment you left me. The comment section of my blog, is my favourite thaaaaang about blogging (especially when I read comments like yours.) It just grabbed a hold of my heart strings. Incredible how you worded it ‘liquid tumours’ <— of course, Canadians have to add an extra U into a million words of ours. LOL. It is true…just floating around…wreaking havoc those little liquid buggers. Well, look out…we are out to drop kick them & knock them to oblivion. I’m so happy to hear about the successful stem cell transplant. So inspiring ! Big love and cheers to you! Thank you for really making a difference in the lives of people. As an oncology nurse, you ~ no doubt~ touched the hearts & souls of some beautiful people along the way.

  84. Nicki says:

    The only word forming in my mind is WOW! You are an amazing person. Stay strong. I wish your every day from now on be filled with love, happiness, laughter and good news.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thanks so much Nicki for your BEAUTIFUL words! I WISH ..incredible strength, love, happiness & laughter…right back atcha !!!
      Big love
      Lynne xx

  85. Katherine McKenna says:

    Lynne,
    Love your site. My husband also has walked this cancer road…okay for now, but you learn to think differently. The kids think differently…life is fleeting…love each moment you have together here on earth with the knowledge there will be a hereafter without any pain and sorrow (or “f”ing cancer)…we’re here for just a blip…and won’t that “mansion with many rooms” be fun to decorate!

    God Bless! K

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Katherine,
      So true, we all learn to think differently. I don’t want to ‘decorate the mansion with many rooms’ for at least another 102 years..LOL…
      Thanks for the beautiful blessings…and the same to you…
      Much love
      Lynne

  86. Sally Smith says:

    Hi Lynne

    Sally here …………
    I have small intestine bowel cancer (welcome to turning 50 years old, lord)- rare & rapid, stage 4.
    Just going through my second infusion this weekend.
    Life has changed over night for me, getting a grip on this, also feeling numb to it all.
    Really enjoy your read, as I have not “blogged” ever yet, hope to become familiar with it?
    Thanks for your thoughts, words, feelings……very real indeed!

    Sally

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hiya Sally
      Hang in there, my friend. Rare and rapid can just SUCK IT and I hope you punch cancer right square between the freakin’ eyes. Show it what you’ve got and know that you have all the love and support in the world….
      Keepin’ it real.
      Big fat hugs to you and for your journey…
      Blogging is a GREAT support system indeed. Great friendships, great love along the way. Welcome aboard the crazy train of blogging :)
      Lynne xx

  87. amazing beautiful and hopeful
    I look forward to reading you regularly
    Everyone has always said I see things differently than the rest of the world- but you do too, friend!
    bless you and yours -n

  88. Lynn
    I love your style and your words! I am so sorry for all ofthis but boy are you something else- best to you and your family
    all my friends say I see things differently from the rest of the world too. I look forward to reading you often-n

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      THANKS NANCY !!!
      I’m so thankful that we can all have a shared view of things… from one end of the earth to other…that is what it is all about !! We have each other to lean on. Thanks for reading my blog. I’m so grateful for each and every awesome FRIEND that I meet through the blog. You are one of them :)
      Big love !
      Lynne xx

  89. Tracie says:

    P.S. Your husband is damned fine! And so are you! You two make a damned fine couple………bless you both. You do the epic shit and thank you for calling it that, I will definitely be repeating it……..and it does make a difference. Yes it does.

  90. Tracie says:

    Dear Lynne,
    I thank you for your story, I only wish I knew you personally. You write exactly the things I think about, but think I can’t say.. I lost my sister to breast cancer in what seems like a lifetime ago, and then again, it seems like yesterday. She died in mine and our mother’s arms 12 years ago, and although iit was not an easy thing to be with her those weeks before she died., I would never have wished myself anywhere else. I know we helped by being there. Some people think they can’t be there, they wish to remember their loved ones as they were. I say crap! Do everything you possibly can to be there and to make things easier. My God, what else is there? Thank you again for all you do, and for all you say, and for all you are, to your family and to everyone around you who cares……………my sister and I went on the walk for the cure this year for the first time for our sister Tammi, what an experience…….we will go again next year and will be taking a team with us this time!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Tracie
      Thank you for your beautiful comments- I really just love love loved them ! Wow, what an experience you had what your sister. There are no true words to express it… you said it best- to tell you the truth.
      Much love to you and your fam
      Lynne xx

  91. Tracy Rex says:

    Hi Lynne – so enjoyed meeting your family at Tony Robbins UPW in July. This blog is amazing – love, love, love the pics. My life too have been touched by cancer in more ways than one. My Mom (named Lynne) is a breast cancer survivor – and her road has not been an easy one. I don’t particularly like the term survivor……… maybe cancer kick-asser is better. Your family is in my thoughts and prayers, Please tell your beautiful girls and your hot tamale I say “hello”! =)

  92. Greg says:

    I was searching for tree-house ideas for my two sons and came across your blog. Amazing how your tree-house post landed in my search and how I was taken in by your latest blog. I lost my father to cancer earlier this year. Doc’s gave him 6 months and he lasted just over 2. If I were to thank cancer for anything in my life, it would be for those 2 months – yet even that would be a stretch. I miss him more than words could ever explain and in those 9 weeks, I discovered the kind of ‘love’ you are referring to – love from my sons, my wife, my family and friends. I promised to live my life as he did … and when falling short, as I tend to do, I find that small things tend to pop into my life and push me back on to the path.. Thanks for the push. Now if I can just find that perfect tree-house….

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Ahhh Greg,

      I just had to write right back. You are so ON, when you say it is a struggle to be THANKFUL when reflecting on moments of incredible loss. I feel it completely, so I understand on every.single.level.

      RIGHT ON !!!..for YOU….to recognize the LOVE from everyone around you. I truly believe all those ‘pushes’ happen to us for a reason. Sometimes they feel like a great big shove :).

      Thank you for reminding me of that too. I really appreciate it.

      The best of luck with your treehouse ideas. If I can give you any treehouse advise, it is to just take it slow and live it as you go. Like making changes in a house, it is easier to decide after you have lived in it for a while. We just MADE UP the plans as we went and it was a hoot. Let me know if I can help you at all.

      Cheers!!
      Big love to you and your family. They are lucky to have you…and I am soooooo very sorry for the loss of your Dad.

      Lynne xx

  93. Francis Staden says:

    Thank you so much for sharing! My best friend/ husband had prostate cancer 8 years ago. On Sept 6th he just went thru surgery for stomach cancer! He will begin chemo on sept 15th. He is only 48. He is “cancer free” but most days all I do is focus on trying not to worry! He is beautiful inside and out and the strongest man I know! So again I say, Thank you for sharing!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Francis
      Wow, I totally get that….and 48 years old, is so very young. Why is it that the older we get, everyone seems younger? Haha! It is hard not to worry, but you are right…it is AWESOME to focus on his beauty -both inside and out…and let it SHINE SHINE SHINE.
      Big love to you both,
      Please write back and let me know how it is going for you.
      Much love,
      Lynne xx

      • Francis Staden says:

        Dear Lynne, Things are good! Started the chemo treatment Monday and he is doing amazing! thank God! I do a lot of praying these days and I canT begin to tell you how much it helps to keep me sane! Thank you and I pray all things are well with you and your wonderful husband. much, much love sent your way!
        Francis.

  94. @ShelleyCHolmes says:

    An exceptional, gut wrenching yet ever inspiring post!

    Very much touched.

    Tell Michael, he is very lucky to have you. We are lucky to have you, Lynn!

    Masses of love!

    Let’s BEAT IT!

    xoxoox

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Shelley !
      Thank you, my friend !! We are all lucky to have each other. Like elephants…with our tusks connected. xx

  95. This was. . . I don’t know what to say. Some mix of beautiful and important and gut-wrenching. When I got to the pictures of his buddies all together, smiling with their shaved heads, I cried. But what’s more important is that I will remember this and I renew a promise I made to myself when someone I love got very sick–the promise to pack as much love and kindness into every single day because what am I possibly be waiting for? Robert Frost says, in the poem “Birches,” that “earth’s the right place for love. I don’t know where it’s likely to go better.”

    I haven’t met you, but I think I’m going to find myself thinking of you fondly and often.

    Katherine

  96. There are no words. Many others have summed up my feelings about your post in their comments. So, I send you and yours copious quantities of love and support, and wishes for days filled with EPIC SHIT. And I will do EPIC SHIT too.

    xox

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Well coming from one of my all time fave bloggers…I will gladly accept that love & support (you send it my way all the time, btw’s) and I already know YOU do EPIC SHIT.
      P.s. to others…go check out movita beaucoup’s blog for hilarious foodie funnies and awesome recipes. Her cupcakes keep me alive. :)
      A good sugar high always helps in writing epic blog posts xx

  97. Tomi j dotu says:

    Thank you for this..my sister reposted this..a nasty brain tumor took our mom 12 years ago..blessing/curse we got to say goodbye…but had to watch her die:( you nailed it perfectly! !! Well done!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hello Tomi
      I am so sorry to hear about your Mom. When I hear stories about what happens to family members, I want to drop kick cancer right square between the eyes.
      Big love to you and your sister…
      Lynne xx

  98. I am touched.. and moved. Thank you for sharing your stories..

  99. Sherry says:

    Wonderful. EPIC!! As a 7 year breast cancer survivor everything you said just resonated….I’m bookmarking this post. For all kinds of reasons. Most especially because cancer is NOT our whole story. It’s only one small slice of the pie. I hate cancer but I love what it has given me.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      So true Sherry,
      And a 7 year survivor ?!!! You rock !!!! CELEBRATE ! Congrats !!! I love how it isn’t your whole story either. It is just there. Just a monkey on your back. But there are lots of other really cute monkeys out there in the jungle of life. So much fun to be had ! xx

  100. Rubybeets says:

    Amazing story of your life. You are a woman with spunk. Keep it going. Cancer is an alien invader!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thanks Crystal !
      Cancer is an alien….too bad it isn’t adorable like E.T…oh that adorable face, the shining finger…still brings tears to my eyes. *awesome childhood movie*. Ok, I have no idea what that has to do with cancer. LOL.
      Big hugs to you, my twitter pal xx

  101. kate dwyer says:

    Thank-you for recording your journey, and for your openness and humanity, God Speed, the picture of you and your buddies are priceless…..
    and thanks Lea Anne for sending me to this website, I’ll pass it along….kate

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thanks so much Kate ! Michael and his buddies were quite the hoot that night. Bromance at it’s finest. haha! Thanks for sharing my blog with others. I’m so very grateful.
      Big love, Lynne xx

  102. Hi Lynne,
    thanks for sending me this post. I actually already read this when you first put it up. I should have left a comment.
    It’s a very inspiring read and it appears that you really “poured’ yourself into this writeup.
    Both you and your husband are very lucky people to have each other.
    God bless.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thanks so much Brett
      P.s. LOVE your name. Same as my son’s. Ohhh no !! I could be your mother. haha! Yes, I did pour myself into that blog post. Thanks for your awesome words right back at me. Blessings to you too. Lynne

  103. Dominique says:

    THANK YOU! Well said. You’ve covered all the gamut of emotions that come with dealing with cancer, including the need for a hug..just a hug, nothing else but a hug sometimes is all that is needed or that can help….a hug is so warming and healthy for the soul…just hug.

    I also don’t know or understand why and why so and so, but to make them feel that somehow it’s their fault, or that if they stay positive they will survive, just makes them feel like a failure if they loose the battle – no one asks to get get, and it does take more than vitamins and a positive attitude to survive it. No need to make people feel that they are a failure when they are fighting for their life.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      So true Dominique, So true….

      It is the absolute contrary, isn’t it? People who fight the good fight are never a failure. They are the prize fighters of all time.

      Before my Dad passed away, he asked us to never say that he LOST the battle to cancer. He always felt like he was WINNING because he loved life along the way. We made memories. Awesome memories.

      I feel like anyone who has the challenge of cancer is WINNING by having a peaked sense of honouring those awesome memories along the way.

      I am sending you the biggest HUG you have ever had in your lifetime. Here it comes …..

      EPIC ***** HUG *****

      With much love,
      Lynne xx

  104. Jarrosson says:

    Hello Lynne ,i am very good friend of Fiona,
    Thank’you so much for your wonderfull blog!!!
    So full of life:)
    Amitié
    Sandrine

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Sandrine
      Thanks soooo much for stopping by. I love Fiona’s blog too. Do you live in Paris ? If so, we all must have a cafe creme and sit at a cafe together for hours and hours. *someday* I hope.
      Lynne

  105. Crocetta Sikorski says:

    It took me a long time to learn to say that if thinking positively was enough, then there would be a cure for cancer to well meaning friends and family members including my own husband!!
    Thanks for sharing your inspiring and heart tugging story with us. It encourages, reassures and empowers at the same time to know that we are in charge of how we decide to react to events and people in our life.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thanks for saying so Crocetta
      I agree with you a bazillion times over. Sooooo very true on every level. Sending you epic hugs of love!
      Lynne xx

  106. Kimberly says:

    I am coming from Sheblogs facebook group.
    I really have no words as this made me completely speechless. This really touched my heart and soul.
    So beautifully written.
    Loved every minute of this. And it opened my eyes really wide.
    Thank you.
    xoxo

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Kimberly,
      Thank YOU. You gave me goosebumps and made me speechless with your beautifully kind words.
      Can’t wait to see more of each other within SheBlogs. LOVE that group….it brings beautiful souls into my life…just like YOU :)
      Lynne xx

  107. mollysue says:

    Wow. Thank you. Someday I will need to pull this post out of my mental wallet and be told that I am not alone, that cancer doesn’t get to take over my story, that all the fight in the world might not be enough to win, but that’s not my failure. Thank you.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      MollySue
      You just made ME cry. You are sooooo right on. I hope you fight the epic fight of all fights and that cancer will never be your ‘story’. Cancer doesn’t get to own any of us. It may be a monkey on the back, but it is not the ruler of our good times. We own those! I feel blessed to meet such incredible- incredible- incredible people just like you…because of cancer.
      Big love to you. Big FAT EPIC LOVE to you,
      Lynne xx

  108. Carina says:

    I’m getting up out of my chair right now and giving you a hug. *squeezes tightly* Can you feel it? xx

  109. Lynne;

    Thanks for cutting through the crap and getting to the guts of the matter. People (including me) are well meaning but afraid. Afraid to say the wrong thing, afraid it may happen to them or someone they love or afraid that they may hurt you, so say things like if you stay positive, you can beat it, you WILL beat it…etc. I’ve always thought the whole recent movement which I won’t name, of: you-create-every-single-thing-in-your-life-by-your-thoughts (the secret), needs to be punched in the eye. It is the single most damaging, damning, undermining bull-shit pop psychology theory that really pisses me off. I normally keep my mouth shut about it, cuz that’s not an overly popular opinion these days, but your refreshing straight-shootin’ words inspired me to spit on cancer and on any suggestion that thoughts may be a cause or prevent a cure. Pure NON-f*cking-SENSE. But I think how you write about it and live with it and deal with it is as positive as it gets.

    Now on a more practical note, you may recall a long time ago, I mentioned the Wellspring Cancer Support Centre in Toronto on the grounds of Sunnybrook Hospital. You don’t have to be a patient at that hospital to use the Wellspring facility and it has classes, holistic massage and other treatments for patients and caregivers. there are cooking classes, meditation rooms and all the volunteers are survivors so can relate to everything you’re going through and can often translate the medicalese into plain English. If you need some more resources you may well find someone or something there that might help. And it’s a beautiful interior, (designed by 27 of Toronto’s most dedicated interior designers,) which would in itself be soothing for your souls.

    So, I wish strength to you, Michael and your kids and I wish you joy wherever and whenever you can find it — and poke the rest in the eye.

    Love, Robin

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Ahhh Robin,
      You are such an incredible friend. Truly. I am so happy that I have spent time with you…and I totally GET IT. I get what you wrote, in every sense.
      I can’t wait to check out the wellness centre. Holy hannah ….27 Toronto designers !! Awesomeness !!
      So well said !!! I couldn’t have said it better myself ! xx
      Love ya girlfriend !!!!!!!!

  110. minnie says:

    both my arms are in the air. my MIL is dealing with her 2nd bout of cancer (she had breast cancer in 1980, and now, 32 years later, has cancer in her fallopian tube and possibly associated lymph nodes). she’s 78 this time.

    my grandpa died of lung cancer in 1967. i don’t remember him. i do remember his funeral. my grandma stayed alone for 34 years after he died.

    f@&k you cancer. i hate you, and i love you, because you’ve caused my boys to grow that much closer to their grandparents (my FIL has alzheimer’s, so my boys have gone to stay with their grandpa while grandma is at chemo/doctor appointments). i hate you because you’re scaring us. what happens to dad if mom doesn’t survive? he’s also got parkinson’s, so he’s physically incapable of taking care of himself.

    f&@k you, cancer.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hiya Minnie
      Well, you sure know how to tell cancer off ! You go girl ! You can definitely tell cancer to kiss your butt. You get the badge award for that.
      Let’s hold cancer back by the arms, and take a big swing at it. *punch* right between the eyes.
      I wish you love, happiness, health and healing…..to you and your family.
      Lynne xx

  111. Kae Winters says:

    Wow. This post made me cry big, fat tears all the way through even though (touch wood!) I’ve not personally been touched by cancer. Truly beautiful, funny, sobering and just wonderful words. I’m sending this to all my friends.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Wow Kae,
      First…I’m sorry to make you cry those big fat tears. I hope you don’t have puffy eyes in the morning. LOL. xx
      What I am not sorry for…is discovering your “about me” page. I was so moved by the RANDOM ACTS OF KINDNESS. Hellooooo, LOVE IT !!!
      A big fat hug to you !
      Lynne xx

      • Kae Winters says:

        Oh I’m not sorry at all, sometimes a good cry is what ails you! It was as much a good cry as a sad cry too.

        And thank you so much! Random Acts is an amazing charity that I encourage everyone to get involved with, just by doing awesome, kind things every day and carrying on the spirit!

  112. Janice woods says:

    You are the ultimate blogger and trust me I love to hug!! You inspire people and I’m lucky to have you as a friend!!!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      To my dear friend Janice,
      Thanks for your awesome words and you ARE a GREAT hugger :). Love that about you! I AM THE LUCKY ONE to have you as my friend. xx

  113. Edward Colclough says:

    Much Love & Blessings Lynne,
    To you & Michael, my heartfelt thoughts and best wishes.
    I understand the emotional rollercoaster ride, that both ‘patient’ and carer go through.
    Cancer has no boundaries, and respects no one.
    In its many forms, is the ultimate organic Trojan war fought within the body of a loved one, quite often leaving both patients and carers devastated and wrung out.
    A battle won, may mean remission, a grant of respite in a war where little quarter has been given.
    Even so, in the apparent calm and joy of remission, there remains the nagging subconscious fear .., will it return ??

    For the survivors, the scars run deep. Could we have done more, should we have done more ?? Some will carry the guilt of surviving. Others the gratitude, the relef that their loved ones are at peace.
    There are days when the loss of loved ones still “shatter” me .. however, there are the soothing balm of memories of cherished precious time together.

    So Lynne and Michael, may the outcome be a joyous one for you both.
    Much love, a steady ongoing strength in the days that lie ahead and limitless blessings for you and your family,

    Edward

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Wow Wow Wow Edward,
      Can you ever write ! You are so eloquent. I write about pee’ing my pants and you string together words of beauty that just had me ‘speechless’. THANK YOU for your incredible input. Every word you wrote is so very true.
      Limitless blessings to you as well. Thanks again for your ‘bang on’ words. I couldn’t have said it better. You are like the icing on my cake. :)
      Big hugs,
      Lynne xx

  114. Lianne says:

    Hi Lynn,e,

    Thanks for this refreshing and honest post on the ‘cancer journey’ as one practitioner called it. A journey it is, but who signed us up for it? My husband and love of my life died of cancer three years ago next week. This time of year always brings me back to those final days with him. I thank you for your uplifting and authentic post.

    I wish your husband and family health, happiness and much joy.

    Sincerely,
    Lianne

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hello Lianne,
      I was recently at your blog too ! Heather sent me your way. It is so beautiful how we all link together in different ways.
      I am sooooooo sorry to hear about your husband. Seriously, if I could take a swift run at cancer and drop kick it into another century – I would do it in a heart beat. It is a dirty bastard.
      Thank you for sending health happiness and joy…I’m sending it right back atcha.
      Big huge hugs to you !!!
      Lynne xx

  115. Max Weissengruber says:

    I worked with Mike at Wilson Learning but have not really made contact since 1997. Kerry Shapansky also worked at Wilson Learning and he forwarded Mike’s email to me.
    I sent Mike and E mail today and hope to re connect. My own wife has been through chemotherapy and radiation for breast cancer and we are now monitoring her condition to see of the various treatments have been effective.
    I am filled with admiration for both you and Mike and how you mutually reinforce each other facing the cancer we all need to hate. I think such a visceral approach, using powerful, non -clinical language is a more honest and engaging way to deal with the BIG “C”.
    Your blog has been both enlightening and insightful and I look forward to more of your blog commentary-unvarnished and personal.

    Sincerely

    Max Weissengruber

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hiya Max
      Michael just told me all about you. So very cool !!! I wish all the LOVE IN THE WORLD to you and your wife for her journey. It is a journey for you too…and as a caregiver…I totally understand that journey.
      I remain, UN-VARNISHED and personal…LOVE LOVE LOVE it…I will have to write that in my ‘about’ page some day.
      Epic hugs,
      Lynne xx

  116. Tera says:

    Thank you for writing.
    My husband has multiple myeloma, enough said.
    Sending you and your family hugs and love.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Tera
      You are right. Nuff said. I completely, wholeheartedly, GET IT. I wish you all the hugs, kindness, support, love and epic moments in the world. Endless hugs. Endless.
      Big love,
      Lynne xx

  117. heather says:

    Hi Lynne – what an amazing creation! I am so glad that someone forwarded the link to me. I wondered if you’d be interested in the Canadian Cancer Society’s online community http://cancerconnection.ca and linking it through there. It would be a great way for many more people who’ve been touched by cancer to read your inspirational story.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thank you Heather,
      I am so excited that you sent the link to me. I absolutely jumped right in there. I figured that I have been hanging out with the cancer society all my life anyway..haha…somehow…I felt like I was already part of the club. LOL.
      See you there !
      Big hugs,
      Thanks again!!
      Lynne xx

  118. Peter DeNardis says:

    Beautiful words…full of eloquence and truth……Thanks for making the journey that much easier for others who are travelling upon their own cancer-laden journey through life!!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thanks so much Peter,
      And thank you for doing such a FANTASTIC job with the IWMF talk list. You rock !!!! Bisous, Lynne xx

  119. Jacques says:

    Lynne, just love your sense of humour mixed with serious emotions. I too am a WM survivor (diagnosed in Nov. 2010) and went through stem stell harvest in Sept 2011 in St. John NB. It took four days to collect 2.1 million stem cells. Go figure I’m only worth 2 million. I needed two blood transfusions at the end and a shot of that awful clear potassium. The chaser was orange juice LOL. I love hugs and look for them all the time. I will send this blog to my friends and family. After awhile I didn’t mind injecting myself with neupogen. My stem cells are now stored and well frozen in liquid nitrogen in Halifax. I now live in Ottawa with my wife Diane and near my children.
    Lots of virtual hugs to you.
    Jacques

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Jacques !!!
      Did you find me from the IWMF talk list? That is soooo SUPER COOL that you have had your stem cells harvested too ! You are a rare dude, 2 million cells and all :) . At Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto, they have only seen a handful of WM patients in 20 years in their stem cell unit….so….like Michael…You guys are ONE IN A MILLION…with a one-in-a-million disease mixed with a one-in-a-million stem cell harvest. You just gave me goosebumps!
      Sending you epic hugs right back to you and your family. You are incredible !
      Lynne xx

  120. Gem and Rich says:

    Hi there Lynne (and hello Michael!)

    We met Michael while we were at Arthur Andersen. Michael was a ‘life savior’ to our Helping Clients Succeed program as he stepped in at the last minute to facilitate it for the London Business Consulting participants. It was Fourth of July week and the American facilitators were unavailable. Thankfully, Michael came to the rescue or we may not have met. I (Gem) was from Chicago and Rich was from London, one of the participants. RIch didn’t even want to attend but stayed on and found Michael quite fun and engaging! Long story – Rich and I have now been married for almost 10 years and Michael is always going to be a part of us – somehow, someway, wherever we are.

    Thank you for this beautiful blog and keeping us posted on your journey as a couple and as a family.

    Love,
    Gem and Rich

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Gem & Rich
      Michael has told me your romantic story. I remember it well. So cool !!!! He has this beauty of putting people together in business and in play. Funny enough. We should call him cupid :)
      Thanks for checking in…and for the beautiful blog compliment * blush *
      Lynne xx

  121. Gem and Rich says:

    Hi there Lynne (and hello Michael!)

    We met Michael while we were at Arthur Andersen. Michael was a ‘life savior’ to our Helping Clients Succeed program as he stepped in at the last minute to facilitate it for the London Business Consulting participants. It was Fourth of July week and the American facilitators were unavailable. Thankfully, Michael came to the rescue or we may not have met. I (Gem) was from Chicago and Rich was from London, one of the participants. RIch didn’t even want to attend but stayed on and found Michael quite fun and engaging! Long story – Rich and I have now been married for almost 10 years and Michael is also going to be a part of us – somehow, someway, wherever we are.

    Thank you for this beautiful blog and keeping us posted on your journey as a couple and as a family.

    Love,
    Gem and Rich

  122. Alex says:

    Beautiful words, beautiful post, beautiful family!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thank you Alex. I guess this means that I will have to stick a wooly hat on his head to go chase my treehouse squirrels. If that doesn’t work, tell your son that I need some new squirrel game plans.
      Kisses
      Lynne

  123. Lee says:

    Lynne, this was the most glorious post. You and your family are astonishing. You put us poor slackers to shame that are not living life to the fullest. Thanks for the kick-in-the-butt i needed !

    xoxoxox
    Lee

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hiya Lee
      Slacker ?!! Yahhhh right. I know you better than that, just from our virtual web-world of awesomeness. You keep rocking it girlfriend ! Putting it together…piece by piece. Excuse the pun.
      Thanks for the blog love xx

  124. Sean Frontz says:

    Hi Lynn,
    We have never met but I have known Michael for several years now. Thank you for opening up to all of us to better understand the world from your perspective! I have lost many relatives to Cancer but none as close to me as the world you are facing… Again, thank you for sharing such deeply personal thoughts and times with us. Keep up the Good Fight and as you say, Laugh, Love, Live, and Let your Light Shine Forth… Luceat Lux Vestra, that was actually the Latin motto of my undergraduate…. the two of you are truly letting your Light Shine Forth. Be Blessed!
    Sean

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thank you Sean
      Let the light SHINE SHINE SHINE…and I keep telling Michael that there is a lot more sunshine on an island. I am sure an island, sand, sun, fun would do the same thing as medication. Can you convince him for me?
      LOL. xx

  125. Paul Gerber says:

    Lynne, your journey sounds a lot like the journey I took with my fiancee with her best friend Kate. I never knew Kate before she was well into her battle with cancer. But I was along side Jamie, who was beside her for 1.5 years out of 3. I hope that I never have to take that journey with anyone I know ever again, but I am thankful for the experience and for the opportunity to get to know Kate. She was an AMAZING lady, right to the end!

    As you can probably guess, we lost Kate on March 9, 2011. She fought the good fight and is no longer suffering. For that peace I thank God! Although being one of the “good-living” people in life I still wonder how & why…but in her insightful words to Jamie when they were discussing lifestyle differences she simply said “God gave it to me because he knew I could handle it and you couldn’t” (I may be paraphrasing, but you get the idea).

    All I can say is I agree with you…CANCER SUCKS! But I also will thank it for teaching me that life is short and precious. As the old saying goes “If your not living on the edge, you’re taking up space!”, so I agree…LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST!!

    In the now infamous saying that always ended her e-mail dispensations to friends during her battle…Take Good Care, Kate (via @PaulDGerber)

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Ahhh Paul,
      Your comment made me cry. Geez, just when I thought I had all those tears out. NOPE.
      Kate sounded like a beautiful soul. A wise one too. When I hear those words, they not only ring true, but they are such a great reminder of the beautiful souls that grace this incredible earth. It must have been a pleasure to have her in your life, even for a short time. I bet Jamie is full of incredible perspective from what Kate taught her when she was living. WOW.
      Thanks so much for sharing. xxxxxxxx

  126. Lee-Anne Richardson says:

    Awesomeness!!! A great read Lynne and a great story. Has shed some new light
    on my approach to life and what is happening out there with diseases.
    As this melts my soul, it too, lights up my world with endless love
    and how we look or handle the cards we are dealt.
    Kudoo’s to you & your family for spreading more awesomeness of love to
    all of your readers.

    Lee-Anne
    P.S. This was forwarded to me via Rob Clark a good friend of Joanne’s. I spent a evening with Jo this summer and it was awesome to see her again after some 35 years…

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Lee-Anne
      Thanks for your beautiful words. What a great experience to rekindle an old friendship with JoJo too! I met Rob Clark a few years ago too ! Small world.
      Thanks for the big hugs across the inter-web.
      xx

  127. Joanne says:

    20 years ago, my dad had a procedure that sounds very similar to Mike’s…. harvest your own bone marrow, kill off everything left, then get healthy enough to “transplant” your own stuff back in, and hope it takes.

    Tough times… but some of the best times… were had during this period.

    You’ll make it through,

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thank you Joanne
      Pretty incredible that your Dad had such a procedure 20 years ago. So cutting edge, for the time, I am sure!
      It was much harder back then, as it was a full blown surgery to get that bone marrow. eeek. Now, they have a way to coax it into the blood stream. Thank Gawd !!
      Funny how tough times and best times often go together.
      Thanks for sending the love.
      Lynne xx

  128. Norma Thiessen says:

    I’m crying in a restaurant!!!!!!!! My oil and butter stained napkin now has a lot more on it!!
    Love you guys SO much!
    Best post ever.
    Thinking of you always. xoxoxox

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Whaaaat? You stained a french napkin ? Paris was so lucky to have you. I hope you had some french wine with that tear. I wish I was there with you.
      Bisous my friend.
      xx

  129. Linda says:

    Sorry for the duplicate posts it wouldnt post the whole thing…maybe because i had an emoji in it. Ithank you for sharing, and an amazing post. Also a favor…I would love to have your permission to print your I Can – Cer Vive picture with the boat in it. I need to send it to someone special. I will keep your family in my prayers.

  130. Linda says:

    I read this this morning, and was too moved to respond, I’ve just read it again and am crying again. Truth=tears. Go live, love, & laugh. I hope someday our paths could meet so we could drink 3 bottles of wine together

  131. Linda says:

    I read this this morning, and was too moved to respond, I’ve just read it again and am crying again. Truth=tears. Go live, love, & laugh. I hope someday our paths could meet so we could drink 3 bottles of wine together

  132. ModernSauce says:

    Thanks for sharing your story and being so open about what an absolute JERK cancer is.! So excited to read about these stem cells – wishing you and your family the best!

  133. papizilla says:

    Excellent post. Found this through “PeachyTeachy”. Loved the way you were able to express how you felt, in a seemingly productive way. I still cannot speak about “C” without being incredibly angry and sassy. Thank you.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi hear ya !
      The big C brings out feelings of wanting to ‘drop kick it in the head.’ Well, that is what it deserves, anyway. Thanks for writing in …. somehow this experience feels that much LIGHTER when we all share it together.
      xx

  134. Catherine Doherty says:

    This was a 2 tequila post. I stopped several times and read it several times. This post was worth the wait. Whenever you speak from your heart (which you always do) a powerful voice emerges !!! Your description of cancer as ‘heart thumping madness’ was wildly accurate. You, your family and Michael are an inspiration to all of us. ALL my love xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      To my dear friend Cath,

      Thanks for your beautiful words and for those phone calls when you talk me off the ledge. LOL. Actually, really.

      I will be forever grateful to you for inspiring me to blog again ! I wouldn’t be writing these words/cancer experiences without your SHOVE in France. Maybe it was the chateau, maybe it was the wine, maybe it was the awesome girls road trip…..maybe it is because you are my soul sista.

      I owe you one. One big one. Minus the absinthe.

      Big love,
      Lynne xx

  135. Raniya says:

    Dear Lynne,
    I really enjoyed reading your post. You are so funny in spite of a serious subject.
    much love to You, Michael and the kids.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      RANIYA !!!!!!
      Hello my friend !! So awesome to hear from you. I know you are supporting us from afar ! We miss you a bunch. Next summer = You + Me in the treehouse ! Deal ? DEAL !
      Bisous !
      Lynne xx

  136. gwen marecek says:

    I love you Lynne!! Michael has the best support system he can find on this or on any other planet.

    Continue to do Epic shit!!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      LOVE right back atcha Gwen !
      Michael THINKS he has the best support system…except when he snores or leaves me piles of dirty laundry. Then….it is game over. LOL.
      Big love,
      Lynne xx

  137. Ruth says:

    What a powerful post. Things like cancer are the reason as to why I want to go into research in order to get one step closer to figuring out a way to stop cancer. It is just crazy to see how cancer is very commonly seen in this time of age because there are so many things that we are being exposed to that were not there before. I wish you the best and I hope your husband is able to beat that cancer. I really hope that in the future less invasive cancer treatments will get developed. because the body takes a major toll during all those treatments. Wishing you and your family the best.

    -Ruthy

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hello Ruthy !
      You brought up a good point, that I wish I had brought up in the blog post. The incredible research and effort that it takes to study cancer and how to find new ways to treat/cure. We are so grateful for the dedication of those…who dedicate their time in finding a cure.
      Michael and I spent a great deal of time at Dana Farber Cancer institute / HARVARD, and met with Dr. Steve Treon and the team of medical researchers…it was a once in a lifetime experience. WOW !!!! It gives me epic goosebumps to know that this work is being done to try and save the lives of people. Eternally grateful.
      Much love, Lynne xx

  138. Jackie says:

    Truly awesome and epic. Good luck to you and your $8 million dollar man! Thanks for sharing.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thanks Jackie,
      I always thought the 6 million dollar man was a hottie….this 8 million dollar man is giving him a run for his money. LOL.
      Big love, Lynne

  139. Danielle Fournel says:

    Great Blog post on Cancer and Life. Thinking of you. Danielle

  140. Nicolas d'Allens says:

    What a wonderful couple you are.
    Michael is fighting and Lynne too.
    (ta femme est vraiment géniale !)
    Thank you for this “super post”.
    All our family loves all your family.
    Nic & Claude.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Nicolas !!!!!!
      It is soooo lovely to hear from you again ! Oh how we miss Paris, but we mostly miss you and Claude and your beautiful family. Thank you for all the wonderful things you did for us. You made our Paris life AWESOME.
      xx

  141. Pingback: Not Funny, But Lovely « peachyteachy

  142. Judy says:

    Inspiring post by the wonderful wife of an equally wonderful husband, friend and colleague. Love the word and photo therapy – they are friggin awesome! Thinking of you and hoping for another visit soon! Love J.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hiya Judy !
      Ohhh my, I owe you some awesome pictures of your place. * best memories evvvha *.
      Thanks for the EPIC night, the EPIC memories, and the EPIC friendship.
      xx

  143. peachyteachy says:

    Thank you for posting this, Lynn. It is beautiful and wise and I hope that you are cool with my sharing it with folks who read my blog. I have witnessed such grace around cancer–amazing healing and peace even as people neared death. “I hate you/I thank you” is right on. All blessings to you and your family.

  144. heather says:

    Beautiful, keep writing Lynne you are doing something Epic !!!
    I laughed, i cried reading your blog
    hugs to you

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thanks Heather,
      I’m happy you enjoyed it. It only took me 4 million attempts to write it. LOL. No probs. haha! Thanks for the CHEER to inspire me to keep writing. I need those cheers every now and again….so THANK YOU.
      xx

  145. Scott MacLellan says:

    Just lost a buddy this past week, Michael will know him well, Jeff Ward sadly passed away at the age of 51, way, way too young. I have not spoken much to Jeff since our hockey playing days roughly 32 years ago. Did not get a chance to say good bye and let him know that he changed my life’s direction…. sort of ironic how one hockey goal can change a person’s outcome in life, but it did. and I will never know that. Hoping he is listening! Will miss you buddy, but will never forget you!

    Amazing blog, very inspirational! Thanks for sharing!
    Scottie Mac

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hey Scottie
      It was so sad to hear about Jeff Ward. Michael found out DURING his stem cell harvest. It was a tough day to hear such news. He told me some great stories. It is WRONG that any soul should leave this earth at such a young age. Maybe it is my OLD age, but 51 is YOUNG to me.
      I am sure Jeff is listening when we say he was loved and will never be forgotten.
      xx

  146. Lin N says:

    Woooooowow! Amazing and beautiful blog. Thank you! May the universe continue to shed benevolence (don’t know how to spell it, but ah knows what it means. lol) and love and courage and laughter and hope and more love on you and your family. May all the light continue to keep ‘C’ away….it is such a bitch of a sickness. Yes, it has, like so many others, touched my life….Namaste

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thank you Lin,
      So true about the big C. I usually reserve that C word for potty mouth moments. I am sorry that it has touched your life too.
      Thanks for the beautiful NAMASTE.
      Much love,
      Lynne xx

  147. Lynn says:

    Wow. Just freaking wow. I lost my brother to HIv and I remember thinking
    that nothing ‘bad’ was happening to me – he was doing all of the heavy lifting.
    But I felt so bad. Empty and void. I could have used a model/mentor/friend
    like you and your family. I admire all of the goodness you wrote about and
    fear all of the worse of it for someone I love. Blessings on you and yours!
    I appreciate your humor, candor and of course, your good taste!

    Thrive on Michael!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Lynn
      My Gawd, I love your name. :) I completely understand how you must have felt with your brother. When you watch someone else with an illness you feel helpless. You want to grab a hold of that disease and just smack it to oblivion.
      Thank you for your beautiful blessings. Much love and epic hugs right back atcha.
      Lynne xx

  148. Auntiepatch says:

    Live, love, laugh, and be as one. Blessings on both of you!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thanks Doll !
      Thanks for coming back time and time again on the blog and sending me beautiful cheer ! You d’best !
      Lynne xx

  149. Kevin R says:

    Lynne… I have no words… except… thank you.

  150. Cancer is a dark place without an exit out. Even after remission, it is always there waiting to strike. When my daughter was stricken, I just couldn’t believe it. We did find things to laugh about and tried to keep an upbeat attitude. She’s in reemission and has moved on with her life, but I know that it will always be hiding in the shadows. One thing we didn’t do was wear pink. Pink sucks just because we thought so. Ok, if walking around in pink makes you think it’s going to be alright, then who am I to say it won’t. And, honestly, I keep an old pink shawl that I wear at nights reading. But, everything else that was pink went out in the trash. Wish getting rid of cancer was that easy!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hey Pamela
      I love how you think ! You reminded me of a story of a Mother/Daughter team struggling to express themselves and their cancer experience.
      The daughter was so tired of the usual pink ribbon and corny style of things, and really wanted to help her Mom just scream out to the world….so she had a T-shirt printed for her Mom.
      It said ‘ FUCK YOU CANCER ‘. Her Mom wore it. Everyone who saw it LOVED it and she printed more. And more. And more.
      Her story made it all the way to the White House. Epic.
      I hope some day to do something epic like that. Even if I have to say FUCK YOU CANCER, to get there.
      Big love to you !!
      Lynne
      P.s. Pardon my french. :)

  151. Exactly 2 years ago, i spent 51 straight days riding that roller coaster in three different hospitals wth my dad so i feel everything you wrote here deeply Lynne. For me, but mostly for you, Michael and your family. Until you take a ride on that roller coaster, it really is unimaginable. But that’s exactly how i always describe it too.
    i love the honesty of this post….LOVE it! you are so right about It ALL.
    it’s about cancer, yes, but mostly about love, hope and family. And a beautiful one, at that.
    xoxo

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Ahhh , my beautiful friend Janet,
      THANK YOU cancer for bringing you into my life. It was our mutual loss of our Dad’s that brought us together. I am grateful for that.
      I am sitting here looking at the beautiful flowers you sent for us. I am breathing the gorgeous fragrance in, and loving it out.
      Thank you for always being there for me.
      IOU one.
      Lovessss ya, my friend.
      xx

  152. mom says:

    My dear Lynne……I love you so much. I wish I could take all your hurt and pain from your heart. Know that I love you beyond words. Mom

  153. Bill Newton says:

    Wow !!!! It’s no wonder your Dad was so very very proud of you! What a girl. Love you kid! Best regards to Mike and Marty

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hiya Bill
      To everyone who is reading this blog…Bill Newton was my Dad’s best friend. Thank You for always being there for us.
      Love you
      xx

  154. Patricia Jaroslawski says:

    Wow…perfect…best wishes to you and yours.

  155. Holly says:

    I love you all! I am so proud of the strength, honesty, and perseverance of your whole crew and especially kudos to the 8 million man! You are all Troy inspiring. Way to go! Love and prayers to your whole sweet family….oxoxoxox

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hey Girlie !
      Thanks for screaming some cheer across the border to us! Thinking of you, and sending you and the kiddos big hugs right back atcha! xx

  156. Katrina says:

    *** High Five Darling ***

    I’ve been lucky, I didn’t have to grow up with cancer at every corner, but that also didn’t prepare my family for my little cousin being diagnosed with bone cancer in April. He just turned 21 last week, and he goes in for his last round of chemo next week. So far, we’re the lucky ones. The first guy he met there, 19 years old, fought just as hard, with the same amount of love and support, but on the day of his surgery it was canceled. It spread, nothing else they can do. It’s not fair, it really F’ing sucks.

    It’s everywhere, it sucks, and it’s tough. But… you’re absolutely right on every account. Keep Fighting. Keep Hoping. Keep Wishing and Dreaming.

    Most of all.

    Keep Living.

    Luv you!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thank you KATRINA for the awesome high five ! A fist pump high five right back atcha.
      19 years old is so waaaay beyond too young to die from cancer. 21 years old is redonk too ! I wish you all the love and support to be strong together…have some laughs…and get through the journey with some awesome moments of epic-ness.
      May miracles happen …
      Sending love and healing
      Lynne xx

  157. Your words and attitude are bang on, and an inspiration. Wishing you and yours a beautiful journey living your lives! Wishing you the very best.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thank you sooooo much Michaela
      Feeling the luv across the inter-web blogging airwaves and I’m so very grateful for it.
      xx

  158. I have the biggest damn lump in my throat. BIgger than the one I get when I see my beautiful daughter from a distance and I can’t believe she is mine. As you probably know I work on a daily basis with people who have cancer. I love my work but it can be so, so hard to hear the stories, to witness the tears, to hear the pain as they say they’re ‘doing fine’ (typical Brits). But it is always a privilege. Reading this was a privilege. Thank you for letting us into your life. And this didn’t seem long at all. It flew by. Thinking about you and MIchael. He is one handsome dude. Bet he’ll be a hot baldy!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thank you Kellie
      It is incredible souls like you that make such a beautiful difference in the lives of cancer patients. I bet every single one of them is LOVING your epic recipes and all that you do. INCREDIBLE.
      Not gonna lie… I always drool on my keyboard looking at your recipes of yumminess. Keep up the awesome work !!!!
      Big love,
      Lynne xx

  159. Lisa McEwen says:

    Loved this blog Lynne… I laughed and cried…

  160. Martina@buildingbeauty says:

    Lynn, I am so sorry you & your family are going through this. It is so true, cancer affects everyone. A close friend of mine was recently diagnosed with cancer, and I wanted to say thank you for this Timely post to remind me to be present in the moments of life.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      You are most welcome Martina
      Even writing about it, reminds ME to do the same. Thanks for sharing and I wish your friend incredible healing in their journey.
      With love,
      Lynne xx

  161. suzana says:

    well written, and yes I have lots of tears flowing down! Miss you guys!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Ah Suzana
      We miss you like crazy too. I hope you and the family are all doing well, and you are loving your new job. I guess it is not NEW anymore :). Next summer….let’s plan a trip ! Meet you in the treehouse (?)
      Bisous !!!
      xx

  162. dave says:

    Bravo Lynne.

    Sending positive energy from the west coast.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thanks Dave,
      West coast ?! LOVE it there ! Send some medicinal marijuana too. Jokes. Jokes. Not really.
      Big hug
      Lynne

  163. beautiful, heart wrenching, funny, perfect and yes long… but worth every word and I’ll likely read it all over again :)

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Stacia
      It was a tricky one. How do I squish all those words into a few paragraphs? LOL. Oh the challenges I have. Thanks for the beautiful blog cheer on !!
      Epic hugs,
      Lynne xx

  164. Holy shit, Lynne. I am overwhelmed. No words. Just maybe hugs, hugs, hugs.

  165. Jane says:

    So honest Lynne! Congrats on a fabulous blog post…….I can’t begin to imagine how difficult this was for you to write. Wishing for many more LAUGHS and less crocodile tears for you and your family in the future! HUGS!!

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Thank you Jane,
      My crocodile tears are over. My laughs are back in town. I got them all out in the blog post. The tears jumped off of me, and on to everyone else. I feel better. LOL. haha!
      Big love
      Lynne xx

  166. Denise says:

    Thank you for this post. I was actually raising my hands. Good thing only my cats could see me! You are EPIC, Lynne, and have a true gift. Every time I read your words, I feel like I am there with you and Michael and the kids. Sending you all BIG HUGS! XOXOXOXOX

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      You are with us, Denise. Every step of the way. Now don’t scare those cats. LOL. Poor thaaangs. Thank you for the big cheer! Big love, Lynne xx

  167. Maribel says:

    You are a rock Lynne, keep on going, live life to the fullest, not giving cancer any chance to beat you guys! Hugs!

  168. Dawna Jones says:

    You are an incredible woman Lynne!!! I can’t stop crying! I’m saving this one cause I have a feeling I may need to refer back to it one day!
    http://www.dawnajonesdesign.com/

  169. Danica says:

    This is the part where I get to swear for you….wait maybe I should’t I am at work and those damn IT guys might find my nasty words……

    Sending that nastiness of Cancer all of my F-Bombs…It’s not even worthy of those.

    I hate cancer and I am also thankful that I have not been directly affected by this shit face disease.

    I send you and your family all of my strength for this battle.

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Ahhhh Danica,
      Thanks for dropping in the F-bomb for me. I love that about you. And oooooh my Gawd, Hilare “shit face disease.” Sometimes this disease makes me shit faced. Pardon my french. haha.
      Loves ya girlie!
      xx

  170. Tracy says:

    Lynne… Breathing it all in and loving it all out to you big time x Epic hug from my shed to your tree house – hoping you might be in it when it comes…. much love to you all x

    • Lynne Knowlton says:

      Hi Tracy
      I wish I was sitting in the sands along the beaches of Greece in times like this. Have an epic time in that awesome artistic shed with a chandelier. xx

      • Tracy says:

        I was swimming in the sea today Lynne but thought of you when I saw the sand,, really good powerful thoughts so that you don’t have too when you dont feel like it – just concentrate on you and your family, at times like these pass all that positive stuff on to others to do for you?. xxx

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