Sassy Pants

Since I am feeling so much better, I have to admit that I am much sassier.  The thoughts below are things that I have thought since my diagnosis when I am talking to people about my cancer.  I never had quite the energy or sass available to “tell it like it is.”  But, now that I do, I have the guts to throw this out there.  Hopefully, you will laugh as much reading it as I did writing it.


Sassy Pants Lori

PS – I hope I don’t piss too many people off.
PPS – If I did in fact piss you off… stop reading my blog.

Just because your aunt had cancer, doesn’t mean that she and I have anything in common.

Just because your cousin’s best friend had pancreatic cancer, doesn’t mean that we have anything in common.

Just because your best friend’s hairdresser went to school with a person who had neuroendocrine cancer, doesn’t mean that person and I have any common ground.

Notice the trend?  My girlfriend Amy is a breast cancer survivor.  She told me early on that everyone’s cancer journey is very different.  Boy, was she right.

If someone tells you that they have cancer, do not assumed they are cured or healthy because they have hair.  The two are not correlated.

If someone tells you that they have cancer, DO NOT ask what their prognosis is unless you are ready to hear the hard truth.  If you still insist and the answer is difficult to hear, be prepared to take the news and DO NOT put any of your emotion on the patient.  This is not fair to them.

For the love of God, do not suggest a miracle food or miracle diet.  Do not put the pressure on the patient to find the product or make them feel guilty if they think the miracle cure is a load of bull.  If they want their opinion, they will ask you!

Quit planting shit into cancer patient’s heads like, “You should really consider going back to work. You might get too bored.”  I’m trying to fight for my life, Jerk Face.  I am in charge of my own happiness.  I am an adult that can make sound decisions.  I’ve made it this far in life.  Let me cope.  It’s one of the only things I still feel like I can do on my own.  I can’t poop without a laxative.  Give me this!

Unless you are paying for their health care or are their personal financier, don’t judge their purchases.  Did I need another high end handbag?  No!  Does anyone, really?  Of course not. It was retail therapy!  Deal with it.

If someone breaks “the Big C” news to you, DO NOT tell them how you think you might have cancer too.  In that moment, it’s not bloody about YOU!  Go to the bleeping doctor and start asking questions for yourself.

For the LOVE OF GAWD, do not complain about your health care problems to a cancer patient.  If you are a fellow cancer patient or a survivor it’s different.  But if you sprained your ankle, put a freaking Ace bandage on it and move the bleep on.  Or do wallow in it, all YOU want, but don’t drag your poor friend in it with you.  They have enough to deal with. (Unless you are my child or an Aggie football player – then let me help you mijo).

If you promise your friend that they can call you anytime day or night, you better answer your damn phone when they call you.  Don’t make promises that you can’t keep.  Move your phone charger next to your bed, leave your ringer on and then answer when they freaking call!

If you have not talked to a person in 15 plus years, sending a “thinking of you” e-mail or card is awesome.  But, DO NOT tell them “if you need ANYTHING at all just call me.”  Dude, I sat next to you in chemistry class 17 years ago.  I’m not going to call you!  P.S. You didn’t even give me your number.

If you feel the undying need to make a food item for your friend.  I can appreciate this as I love to cook.  That is an awesome sentiment!  But, ask questions.  Do you want some food?  If so, what are you eating?  Do spicy foods hurt your mouth?  Do you want to steer clear of sugar?  Are you eating meat?  Showing up with a giant casserole of bacon mac ‘n cheese might be awesome in some households, but not all.  Like the milk allergy, gluten sensitivity, vegetarian one.

This one is personal and probably does not apply to all cancer patients.  But do NOT tell me, “God only gives you what you can handle.”  Tell God I said mercy and I CANNOT handle any bloody more!

Or my favorite… “Everything happens for a reason”.  No, it does not!!! Why on Earth would a mother, a professional, a 33 year old get an incurable cancer?  This did not happen for a reason.  This sucks and it’s unfair.

Here is a list of appropriate things to tell someone who has cancer:

If you haven’t seen that person but you know they have cancer.  You can say…

  • I just wanted to let you know you are up against a tough battle.  I’m in your corner whether silent or loud.
  • I’m rooting for you.
  • What can I do to help you?
  • I will send all of my positive energy to you (whether it be in prayers or sage burning – either one is fine).

If you are surprised by this person’s news.  You can say…

  • I honestly don’t know what to say in this situation.  There are just no words.  I’m so sorry.
  • I’m sorry that you are going through this.
  • You don’t deserve it.
  • Fight the fight – you warrior you!
  • The mind is a powerful thing.
  • Go. Fight. Win.
Then hug them.  Like two arms, comforting, squeeze, take a second and act like you are truly sorry.  

That is all.

Soap box is closed.

13 thoughts on “Sassy Pants

  1. Omgoodness!!!! Miss Lori I freaking love it!!!! You are one tough mama and a total inspiration!!!!

    Glad you have your sass back!…

    See ya soon!

  2. So sad that the majority of people who need to hear this…. won’t. Each person is a melange of his/her own personal experiences and can only relate as far as they are emotionally/intellectually able and …truly… are self centered. I have witnessed many people in the fights for the time they have alive in so many different ways and so many people around them won’t recognize that it is their personal dance- others just share from the sideline… You clearly know how to live fully and will dance this dance to its fullest. Go LORI! Keep up the education of us all!

  3. Hi Lori! It was great meeting you after the game on Sunday. You are a beautiful, strong, and vibrant woman. Your strength amazed me and lifted me up when I had become discouraged with my own situation.
    I have been reading your blog today while at my treatment. I love it! Sassy Pants had me laughing and crying. I related to every single thing you said!
    I also saw your comment in Thank you so much. Your kindness means so much. And yes you absolutely have my permission to share the page on your blog.
    Also, thank you for being a source of support for my son while he is so far from home 🙂 It means the world to me!

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