So, I was wondering why was I “hit” hard when learning of the passing of Kyle Rae Sweet, wife of Stryper frontman Michael Sweet. It wasn’t because I’m a fan of the band, even though I am. I don’t even know much about her beyond the facts that she was a wife and mother of two and former makeup artist. Her death hit me unexpectedly hard because of the way cancer has invaded the bodies and lives of people I love and care about, causing me to reflect on those both passed and living with cancer. And I felt, in some small way, the loss Michael and their kids must be feeling… though I really have no idea what they’re going through.

I lost both of my Grandmothers to cancer, my Mom’s Mom when I was only 5 and my Dad’s Mom the day after my 32nd birthday. My Mom was diagnosed with breast cancer in October 1998 and then was “cured” of it, but was again diagnosed in October 2008, this time Stage IV as the cancer had metastasized to her bones. As my Mom finishes up radiation treatment in the coming weeks, having already gone through chemo that was much stronger than the chemo needed in 1998, her Oncologist is optimistic that she has “a good 10 to 15 years” ahead, despite the fact that they won’t be able to get rid of the cancer. It’s still scary, and I know the Sweets thought they were out of the woods at one point, too. I remind myself that every case is different and if my Mom’s Oncologist is optimistic, than we should be as well.

But… like I said, it’s still scary.

I am also optimistic for my old friend Jason’s son Von who’s battling leukemia; at the same time I wonder why this thing called cancer hasn’t been “cured” across the board yet. It’s encouraging to learn of the major advancements in treatment that have been developed in just the last decade, and more and more people are living cancer-free after treatment than ever before. I just wish we were already living in a time when “the big C” wasn’t scary at all and was just a minor inconvenience.

Hopefully soon.