My brother, Steven, died from cancer when he was 14. Desmoplastic small round cell tumor is the official name, but basically it was cancer of the abdominal lining.
|Steven (age 12) with my newborn son, Travis|
|Steven during his first year of treatment|
|Steven and Travis in Williamsburg|
He was 14 years old.
I look at my own son, also 14. His favorite part of the day is mealtime. Food is everything, and lots of it.
How would that be? Not being able to eat anything. Steven could only watch and smell.
|Steven, Summer 1997|
He coped by watching cooking shows and became a rather excellent chef. He was especially good at making omelets and insisted on making me one when I came over for a visit one morning. I actually was full from my own breakfast, but I enjoyed it for him. He also insisted my parents buy a deep fat fryer so he could make a "blooming onion" just like they do at Outback Steak House.
It was hard. Very hard. I talked to Steven on the phone before his final surgery in late September. He told me all he wanted from the surgery was to be able to eat and drink again. He craved a hamburger.
|Steven ( age 14) September 1997|
On December 1, 1997 Steven passed away.
Clearing out his desk my mother found coupons for pizza and Mexican food. He had held onto hope.
**********Thank you, Steven, for helping me remember that food is a blessing not a curse. It is for my nourishment not for my gluttony and my emotional psyche.
Thank you for helping me remember that I have a choice. Every day. You did not.
Your trial was horrible in a way that I will never have to try to understand, yet you found the good and the positive and didn't give up.
Thank you for helping me want to do better when it comes to food, to stick to the goals I have that seem so shallow compared to what you went through. The humdrum of daily living goes on for us still here and I often forget the perspective you taught.
Thank you, Steven, for helping me remember.