“I’m back.”


My relationship with cancer, specifically leukemia, didn’t begin last month, as some might think.  No… we go way back.  You see, when I was 10 years old I descended the steps to my bedroom, to the sound of my sisters’ tears, and drew a tiny angel on my calendar.  I had just found out my mom was going to die.

For the next five years, cancer was our constant companion.  He visited in the dark of the night, repeatedly coming to me as a vampire in my dreams, holding my mother captive.  During the day, he would show up when I least expected and whisper fears into my ear.  “What will life be like without my mom?”  “How much longer does she have?”  His presence gouged and caressed me; stealing my innocence while gifting me with tools I’d use often in life.

When I was 15, cancer left my side as suddenly as he appeared.  I said goodbye to leukemia when I said goodbye to my mom.  I laid next to her in bed and watched her belly swelling with blood.  Her labored breaths came further apart, until one last gasp told me it was over.  I looked up at the ceiling and wondered if her spirit was looking down on me.  At her funeral I told my dad I was no longer afraid of death.  Watching my mom die had somehow created a peace inside me about my own mortality.

I thought leukemia was done with me and my family, and for 33 years he stayed away.  Then, on October 4, 2015, after being rushed to the emergency room in an ambulance, I heard him whisper in my ear once more, “I’m back.”


27 thoughts on ““I’m back.”

  1. Pingback: The Cancer | Sarandipity Travels

  2. Harvey Stanbrough

    Are you kidding me? Do I want to follow this? OF COURSE I want to follow this! Thanks for including me in your initial offering, Sara.


  3. Lisa

    I appreciate your openness about your journey, not everyone is comfortable to share such a story. I do want to know what is happening physically & emotionally, to help me understand it & learn from you. When we were kids it was a rarity to hear about cancer, although I know in your family it wasn’t, I remember about your mom, but now it seems it’s permeated into a common everyday word. Too common unfortunately,I’ve seen & heard it myself multiple times now, but everyone’s story is different. Your taking this common word & making it into something beautiful, straight from your heart. I look forward to your next installment.


  4. Linda Artley

    What a wonderful, cathartic journey you are embarking on. There is no end to those you will help by making them realize they are not alone. This first blog is so gripping and raw and I look forward to reading along on your journey as you go through it. Bless you Always!


  5. Michael Hills

    To a person who I have never met but feel so very close to. You were a great inspiration to me in photography and a great inspiration in life. Thank you for sharing this blog with us you beautiful person. 🙂 x


  6. Lisa Schnapp

    Wow, have you ever thought about writing a novel? You have such a way with words. You are constantly in my thoughts and I am honored you have chosen to share this journey with us.


    1. Thanks for keeping me in your thoughts. It’s funny that you ask that. When I was younger, I wanted to write a book, but wondered what in the world I’d write about. I didn’t feel I had much to say. Fast forward a few decades and life’s has given me far too much material. LOL


  7. Barb

    My Mom died from leukemia in Aug 2011. She survived 3 previous cancers over 4 years and the second last one took 7 months for her to gain consciousness and get off the ventilator. I knew she wanted to live and was a fighter so did not listen to the doctors, she amazed everyone. She demonstrated a love for life and a passion for her family. I am glad I was able to learn from her example for 55 years. Your writing is inspiring. I know you will amaze everyone you come in contact with too. Barb


  8. I’m late to the party, Sara, but I just noticed the heading CANCER! DH and I have been living with his Multiple Myeloma since 2006. We had to come off the road from fulltiming then, but try to take shorter trips now. It isn’t easy, but we do manage some fun along the way.

    I’m anxious to read all that you have written – about your cancer journey and about your egg, which is simply gorgeous, by the way! ;-> My husband joins me in wishing you the best possible outcome and whatever pleasures in life you may be able to find and enjoy.

    Virtual hugs,



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