Sharing a Cancer Diagnosis with Family, in Verse

Looking back, perhaps a poem could have helped me tell my family about my cancer diagnosis.

It’s no easy task to broach the subject of your cancer diagnosis to loved ones. If I had it to do over again, I might have used verse to help my family to grapple with this new reality:

Dearest ones, please gather ‘round

for an important revelation

I’ve gone through numerous tests

and the doctors can now attest

it’s cancer, and now the explanation


First, don’t worry, please don’t fret

I’m getting the very best care

good doctors, a treatment plan

coming up first is a routine scan

so, ask me anything, clear the air


Before you do, please hear me out

cancer’s a journey with twists and turns

ups and downs, highs and lows

many procedures and exams to undergo

and fraught with many concerns


I’m laying this out, 'causeit’s no easy path

for any loved one to try to embrace

so please stay for the entire course

you are my everything, my life force

my joy, my comfort, my breathing space


To my wife, precious one indeed

many happy years side by side

you know, yes you know what I seek

it’s to you, dear, I earnestly speak

of our marriage my biggest pride


To my children, I feel so totally devoted

beloved, cherished, so very dear

a son and a daughter forging their way

working toward goals, a brighter day

it’s OK, you can shed a tear


To my sisters, cut from the same cloth

your blood my blood, lifelong bond

once playmates, now great friends

you are unique, such a godsend

when I’m in need, you always respond


To my granddaughter, one and only

please know I’ll always love you

close to my heart, a beautiful person

don’t worry too much, dear one

I’ll hold you close whatever ensues


So, family, that’s it for now

life’s not always very kind

seems kind of out of control

good health my number one goal

but this will all take some time


Meantime, remember:

you are my world

and I love you so!


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