Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have a candid conversation with your cancer? I have. And one day, I did just that. It was something I needed to do, and I’m glad I did. It is my way of handling it.
Now, the conversation is a bit satirical and, because I am Italian (my great-grandfather came “off the boat” from Palermo, Sicily), I imagined it as talking to an Italian mafia hood. My conversation with cancer went something like this.
It was a bright and sunny Saturday afternoon, and Steve and his cancer, Vinny, aka “The Cancerous Thug,” are having a chat.
Steve: How you doing?
Vinny: I’m doing good. This thing of ours is going well, you know what I mean?
Steve: Look, I don’t like you. So what the heck are you doing in my neighborhood?
Vinny: I heard about this guy named Stevie Boy, who was having a good life, and I wanted to come by to mess it all up. What do you think about that, Stevie Boy?
Steve: I think you are in the wrong neighborhood. And you need to get the heck out!
Vinny: I don’t think so. Not so fast! You see, I heard from this kid named Soy, and his pal Estrogen, that you have been letting them run wild in the neighborhood, and that is why I am here now. Time to pay up, Stevie Boy!
Steve: What are you talking about? What does this have to do with Soy and Estrogen?
Vinny: It has everything to do with them. It hasn’t got nothing to do with your family. You know what? I am going to take everything from you. Starting with your pecs, nipples, your emotional stability, your confidence, your hair and then your life. You are dead! You have no idea that … I am … going to … break you.
Steve: (standing up) You talking to me? You talking to me?!
Vinny: Yeah, what are you going to do about it? You are nothing!
Steve: You want me?! You’re coming at me? Well, my family and friends have my back. You will never break me. I am going to beat you down. I am going to kick your butt all over the place and make sure that you never come back to my neighborhood. Capeesh?
Vinny: Stevie Boy! You have no idea who you are messing with! But I will make you an offer you can’t refuse.
Steve: I am listening.
Vinny: Let’s end all of this now. Pain or your brains on the coffee table.
Steve: Hmmm … Nice offer, but no thanks. I will take the pain, but you will never win against me. Don’t ever mistake my sickness for weakness.
Vinny: Yeah, I’ve heard that before, Stevie Boy. But you see, I will always be that fear in your neighborhood. Your parents will always worry about that. So will your friends. There is nothing that you can do to get rid of me.
Steve: Not true. I have the one boss. Boss of all bosses. He takes care of all fears. And no one, and I mean no one, can ever defeat Him. Do you know His name?
Vinny: Whatever, Stevie Boy! OK, who is this man? Where is he? I’ll take care of him like I am going to take care of you. Six feet under.
Steve: He is no man! His name is GOD! (Thunder and lightning follows)
Vinny: Oooh! I’m shaking over here!
Steve: Bada boom, bada bing! You’re done! Fuhgeddaboudit!
I hope I never see Vinny, the Cancerous Thug, again. However, we may have need to have another conversation. Later.
Ever have a cancer conversation with your own Vinny, the Cancerous Thug? Tellmeaboutit!
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