My Unknown Soldier

Veterans’ Day and Memorial Day make me sad because my late husband, Richard, was not quite a veteran but his service to his country killed him.  ...more

3 Options for a Loved One With "Chemo Brain"

If your loved one is suffering from "chemo brain" -- cognitive impairment caused by chemotherapy-- there are several things you can do to help.1. The Moffitt Cancer Center is currently seeking HEALTHY volunteers for a study on Chemo Brain. They want people with no history of cancer who will agree to give a blood sample and meet with researchers 3 time sover the next year. You'll be paid $20 per visit. Email for more info. By volunteering, you may be helping to fight Chemo Brain for your loved one and others like them....more

Moving Beyond Childhood Cancer

Childhood cancer is the leading cause of death by disease in children.  Our daughter, Zoe, was diagnosed with leukemia in September of 2010. Her chemotherapy ended December of 2012....more

My Boy Since Cancer

Since my six-year-old son Jack was diagnosed with Leukemia in January, there have been both sweeping changes and little changes in our life. Some are harder to describe than others - some more subtle while others are glaring. Sometimes aspects of his personality that were there before might come out in a more noticeable way, or they might be more hidden, protected. Jack is still himself, of course, but the version of him we are living with now isn’t as steady or balanced. I often wonder how much of him is changing permanently because of this experience....more

An independence shout out - why I became a Journalist

I was born on Brazil’s Independence Day (September 7th) in 1982 in a small town called Jaragua do Sul, in Santa Catarina State. My full name is Mariana de Cerqueira Knabben, but everyone calls me Mary. I had a pretty regular childhood and it was a fun one. When I was 6 years old, my parents decided to move to another city called Joinville in the same state....more

Staring Back...When Your Daughter Looks Different

My daughter was diagnosed with leukemia in 2010.  Besides the fact that she's still in treatment she's just a normal 7 year old girl... It's human nature to look at something you don't understand.To look longer to try to get an idea of what it is you are seeing.An extended gaze that often turns into a stare....more

A Good Drug

This is a post I wrote in July when our daughter, who has been fighting leukemia since 2010, was hospitalized with a fever... Leukemia has been in our lives for 22 months. You would think we would know what's happening by now. Know the ins and outs and feel the ups and downs before they happen. But that's not how sickness happens. It jumps out from behind a bush scaring the crap out of you yet again. You know it's there, but BOO, and you are on your back down for the count. Zoe has been feeling so well for so long....more


We have CANCER in our family. Too, too much cancer.1. My 55 year old sister had Lymphoma Cancer, but is now in remission.2. My 83 year old mother has had Myelodysplastic Syndrome for 3 years. If not cured, it will turn into Leukemia.3. My 30 year old niece had Thyroid cancer, had surgery and is in remission.4. My son in law has Lymphoma Cancer and is facing a stem cell transplant in the spring.5. My husband's 35 year old niece has Breast Cancer and has had a double mastectomy, but it has spread to other organs. ...more
Oh Reda, how horrible for you and your family. That's way too much cancer. I'm soon 5 years ...more

Dark Chocolate

I wish life really was like a box of chocolates. Where you could pick and choose. Wrinkle your nose at the ones you just don't care to taste or try. You could choose the easy. The happy endings. Dream away nightmares....more