I forgot what chemotherapy does to the body other than killing cancer cells.The memories, along with the side effects, have returned. The changes to my digestive system and my thinning hair have spoken loudly that "the cancer's back."
I used to believe that all stories had a beginning, middle and end. While in the most obvious of ways, Brett's death was a finite end; it would take years for me to realize not only that the three of us could make a pleasing new life but that doing so meant rewriting our story.
Yes, it was beautiful, but we weren't here to look. We were here to climb, and through that prism, it was a huge, foreboding, snow-covered monolith that seemed impossible to reach let alone climb and summit.
This has been a year full of challenges for the LIVESTRONG Foundation, to be sure, but the recent press narrative surrounding the Foundation has me thinking of the old Mark Twain quote: "The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated."
If he says he held his breath underwater for 17 minutes and four seconds, and that he did it through intense training and a deep understanding of the physiology of his own body, then that should be good enough. I should take him at his word. I want to believe.
A frequent question I get is, "How's everyone at the Foundation doing?" The truth is, it's been rough. None of us anticipated the rapid and radical changes that are now the new normal. But we're dusting ourselves off and keeping the focus where it should be: helping people with cancer today.
Livestrong will survive and thrive. The millions and millions of cancer survivors and caregivers globally will also thrive because thrive is what we do. But Armstrong's children deserve more than anyone in this entire story.