Say The Word You Can't Say

The word Cancer was kind of like the He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named of our world. It wasn’t ever supposed to be spoken about—not directly anyway. We could talk about treatment: chemotherapy, radiation, and acupuncture. We could talk about doctors, nasty chemo side effects, and wigs. But never Cancer itself.

Even when referenced in conversation, we called it: “it”, “the big C”, or “the c-word.” (Nice, I know.)

In retrospect, this dancing around the word itself fueled our fear of the disease itself. For just as we realize in the Harry Potter series, those who cannot speak about what they are afraid of lose any hope defeating that fear. It was only Harry, who had no trouble calling Voldemort by his real name, that was able to face him.

The same goes for anything in life. To defeat what terrifies you most, you must call it by its name. You must believe in your magical ability to defeat it. And you must face it.

Kate Ward