Laurianne's Hope

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Cancer Stories: Blue's Mom, Sharon

Bluepaintred asked me to post her mom's story on the 10th anniversary of her death. Also, she is going to try to quit smoking for herself. I think that is a great way for her to remember her mom, and I wish her luck!! Also, if you are trying to quit smoking, check out the sidebar. There are some links that may be useful to you.


Maybe, as a smoker myself, I have no right to criticise the lives cancer steals. Or maybe as someone who does smoke, as someone who thought ‘I can quit anytime’, until the first time I tried to quit, I can teach just one person how hard it is to quit. How physically and mentally exhausting it is. How it is not worth it! Maybe I can stop them from lighting up that very first time.

*We do not smoke inside out home*.

I teach my children that smoking is disgusting that it fills my lungs with tar, even my youngest, 2, tells me I smell yucky, and I encourage that… I don’t lie or try to hide my smokers cough from them. I couldn’t bear it if they started. Yet if I had to leave them early, like my mother was forced to leave us, it would hurt so much more.

Today, February 13, 2007, on the tenth anniversary of my mothers’ death, I will put down my cigarettes and try once more to quit. I have failed in the past, but if I keep trying, one day I will succeed.

Sharon Gehon.

May 18, 1954 – February 13, 1997

In September of 1996 my father and I were digging up potatoes in the garden when he told me they found “something” in my mothers’ lung. It all happened very fast from then on; she had a biopsy, which was positive for cancer. I’m not sure the type.

I was seventeen at the time.

My mother hurt her back at work and had me rub it every night. It never seemed to get better, but she did not really think about it.

She had been a long time smoker, and had quit 4..5 (?) years before. I can remember when she was trying to quit, she had a little plastic smoke that she used like a baby would a pacifier. When she was really wanting, she would stick it in her mouth and suck, unfortunately she often forgot, and lit it!

I can’t recall the events very clearly, but some things really stand out in my mind.

Sound. It bothered her a lot when she was in chemo. We, (I have two other siblings, a sister who was 20 and a brother who was 11 at the time), would have to tip toe around, TV was very low and even talking was frowned on.

Smells. They were the worst for her, I think. We had a fridge and a stove down in the basement though, and my dad would cook food down there to help with the smells.

If it’s possible to have a favourite memory of a loved one suffering from chemo, it would be when my mother, sick and tired of hair falling in her food, had me vacuum her head. It occurred to me, much later, that the hair must have been bugging her something awful to have put up with the noise of the vacuum. But hearing her laugh as I tried to get it all… that’s something I cherish.

I got my drivers licence while my mom was in the hospital, I can remember going in to show her it. I was very excited! She looked so tired.

My mothers’ parents came down and stayed with us for a long time. They were there with us in the end.

I was on the phone, down in my room with my then boyfriend when uncle.. my grandpa(?) came and asked me to get off the phone, that dad wanted to call the hospital for a check in. Within minutes all of the adults knew, and I think us kids knew too, that this was it. My dad made it to the hospital in time, and I am happy for that.

I do not remember who told me, or how. That day is very much a blur for me.

It was February 13, 1997, she was 43 years old.

I met my future husband seven months later. Mom never got to meet him. She would have liked him, I think. And when I was pregnant with my first baby, I wanted so badly to ask her about a million questions. There was no way for my dad to know all the stories a mother tells her child.

How big was I? What did I weigh? Was I on time?

I have three boys and they will never know their Grandma Sharon. That, I think is the worst thing of all.

Me, Myself and Us -

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Lung Cancer AwarenessPosted by Lynda (Laurianne's Sister) :: 7:36 PM :: 7 people are more aware