- Posted March 1, 2013 by
Saint Joseph, Michigan
This iReport is part of an assignment:
The written word: Your personal essays
A sibling's death.
My wife, Janie, and I witnessed first-hand the terrible effects of breast cancer. No, it wasn’t my wife who suffered from it; it was her younger sister, Margie.
Margie had found a redness in her right breast and became concerned when it did not go away. When she finally did go to the doctor, she learned it was a very aggressive breast cancer. Surgery was called for to remove the breast and the lymph nodes nearby. Chemo and radiation were used, resulting in burns to her skin, loss of hair and extreme sickness.
The cancer then went to the diaphragm under her right lung. More surgery. A few months later it went to her bones.
My wife stayed with her sister the last two weeks of her life. Even with powerful pain medication Margie was in agony. I remember going to see my wife as she stayed with Margie. At first, Margie knew when I came and would call from her room when she heard my voice. Communication was mostly through our eyes. I could see her pain and fear, and she could see my love and concern for her. Before this, we had not had a close contact, just your typical in-law visit.
Margie died just before Christmas 2011.
I have been a cancer survivor since 2000; throat cancer; malignant.
The picture I posted is of my wife, Janie, and I.