Tuesday, April 20, 2010

How I Caused My Cancer

cross-post from www.mylifeline.org June 25, 2008


It happened again today. Someone asked my mom, "What was it exactly that Jennifer did to cause her cancer? Was it the chlorine in water?"

When I hear this question, I now understand that what is truly being said is, "Please tell me what I must do or not do to ensure I never get cancer!" So without further ado, I hereby release into the world the hidden truth. Yes my friends, you don't have to ask anymore, I am going to reveal the catastrophic error in my ways that led me down this tragic path. Premarital sex.

Look, I know that no one ever wants to have a lump that is "most likely nothing" or to hear "we just want to run a couple other tests to make sure," because we fear a diagnosis of cancer. I sure as heck never wanted it to happen to me. I certainly do not wish it on anyone else. But cancer, like most the big problems in life, is multi-factoral. No ONE or TWO things guarantee a person will or won't get it. I know lots of smokers who don't have cancer and I know athletes and vegans who do. I know people with fantastic attitudes about life and coping with illness who have died from cancer and I know a couple of real doomsayers who just keep spreading their despondency into old age.

I wish I had better news. I wish the answer could be found in a pill or in the use of water filters. Honestly. Unfortunately, today's lesson is simply this: WAIT UNTIL YOU ARE MARRIED!


  1. I get this post.... big hugs. Sorry to say...cancer does not discriminate.

  2. I'm sorry but I broke out laughing when I read your post......when I went through my breast cancer I was told it was what I ate, or because I smoked (I haven't for years) or my religion....unbeliveable! I will say I do think stress does have something to do with my cells going hay wire.....my husband had passed then my son, my mother and my father in law passed within 2 and a half months of each other, perhaps I am wrong but in my heart I feel stress and tension helped those cells to go crazy..........why people tried to blame me for my cancer I don't know, I don't ever care. I have better things to spend my energy on. Be well my dear friend and know you are not responsible for your cancer.....you are responsible to ignore the ignorant....:-) Hugs

  3. ROTFL!!

    But you are mistaken -- CANDY is the cause of all cancer.

    So, in an effort to save you all from your dangerous ways, please send all your candy to me, and I will make sure to dispose of it, so that no one else will suffer.

    Note: licorice and "good n' plenty" are especially toxic and should be sent to me immediately!!

  4. I just stood in front of my microwave long enough to give myself thyroid cancer. Or, maybe it was that I was bitter. I'm not sure which well-intended, but hurtful, accusation was true.

    We all learn something from someone, even the accusing bad examples. We all have learned what NOT to say to a suffering person.

    For this we can be thankful!

  5. I told an old college roommate, when she said she thought my cancer was caused by the toxic environment we've created that, if that was so, then we should all have stage IV cancer. I say we fabricate bizarre cancers just for giggles: I'm currently fighting valiantly against the terminal elbow cancer I concocted by hanging my arm out the window too often on the glorious Colorado days.

    My best defense, recently, has been complete silence. "How do you think you got cancer?" Nothing, nothing, nothing, then, "It had to have been that 456th trip to the KMart that did it. I should never have needed more toilet paper, and I'd be good as gold now."

    One woman's dark humor is another's aghast face at our presumed "lack of seriousness." But when it's this serious, if we don't laugh, we'll cry.

  6. I am glad to know I made some people laugh. So much of what I have to say is sad, gut-wrenching, and morbid. That, of course, does not mean that is everything I have to say; since I still can find humor in a rotten situation.

    I remember visiting my late grandmother in the hospital when she was seriously ill and she was cracking jokes. I admired the fact that she didn't want to wallow in the morose mood. Yes we each had our chance to speak our peace with her but she didn't much want a group depression-session on her account. I love her dearly, admire her strength and hope she is proud that I too will make jokes while I can.