What Cancer Looks Like—Example #53,629

When my husband and I bought our house nearly 10 years ago, we were happy that the previous owners had invested some time into the landscaping. We have nice bushes, daffodils, and a variety of tulips in multicolored rock gardens. This means that we do not have to put a tremendous amount of work into making the yard look nice. It can be tedious work, but most of it is very simple maintenance.

Unless you have cancer. Or are married to someone with cancer. Or your parent has cancer. Then, it is so far down the priority scale that landscaping becomes one more thing to add to the list of Shit That Will Not be Done. For months, I never looked at my yard. It didn’t even occur to me to look. Even though it is right next to the front door, I never saw how completely out of control the rock gardens were becoming. Two weeks ago, I looked. It was fucked up.


The Garden That Cancer Caused to be Forgotten

You could barely see the rocks. In a rock garden. Knowing that radiation can cause fatigue and that my doctor was pushing me to exercise more, I decided to tackle it after work. It took me a little over an hour to weed out the approximately 15’x 4′ garden. I rested twice and drank two bottles of water and it looks so much better.


It’s certainly not perfect. You can see there is still quite a bit of green in those rocks. Also, I never even touched the bushes and those desperately need to be cut back. However, I am so stoked that I did it! It can be so discouraging when you can’t do anything that usual grown-ups do. Although right now, every time I show my husband something that I’ve done, I feel like Stuart from MadTV.

“Look what I can do!”

4 thoughts on “What Cancer Looks Like—Example #53,629

  1. Inch by inch; row by row….. (See if you can find a recording of Pete Seeger singing that song. I’ve found it very sustaining.) Love


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