Life with Cancer, Entry#19: Happy Death Day

Cultural traditions have always been a point of interest for me… how an entire populace can come up with a concept and execute it in a way that creates a unique experience in their collective lives, then convince the next generation to do the same. In particular, traditions that deal with the afterlife were especially…

Life with Cancer, Entry#16: The Lure of Suicide

It was because of a suicide that convinced me to start this blog (if you missed it, you can read the details from Entry#01: Ground Zero), and so I’d like to talk about this topic now that it has a little more personal meaning to me. I have always been one to try to see the…

5 Things Keeping You From Being Happy, and How to Overcome Them.

So many things that we learn in life, we learn from our parents.  My dad, probably more than anyone, taught me how to be happy. Dad grew up during wartime Vietnam.  He lived through violence, oppression, and unspeakable hardships that would have made weaker men give up and die. But he didn’t. He persevered, escaped from the…

Life with Cancer, Entry#12: Sacrifice

All parents make sacrifices for the sake of their children, but mine I think, have made more than most… My grandfather was a medic during the Vietnam War fighting for the Democratic South against the Communist North.  After the South lost the war, he was branded as a traitor, sent to prison, and his children…

Life with Cancer, Entry#10: Dead Man Talking

My brilliant nephew Carter, who always makes me laugh. At my sister’s New Year’s Eve party the other week, I had a nausea attack and had to go sit in the restroom. I was on the floor leaning against the wall with my eyes closed when I heard the sound of footsteps and Carter’s voice,…

Life with Cancer, Entry#09: Love is a Bowl of Soup

Love is a bowl of soup. For some people, love means diamond rings and fancy things, to show off to their friends, and feel like queens and kings. For me, love is my wife who cares for me each day. She took a job far away, with 25% less pay, so that I would have insurance…

Life with Cancer, Entry#08: Bad Day

I have good days… I have bad days… and I have really bad days. Yesterday was one of those really bad days. The pain was so intense that I couldn’t get out of bed.  I just laid there shivering in cold sweat, praying for it to end. Mai was at work, Nhi was at school, and…

Life with Cancer, Entry#03: To My Daughter

My darling Nhi, Even when you were little, you were never like the other kids.  You marched to the beat of your own drum, and did things your own way. I want you to know that, all of it, is okay. We love you more that way. I don’t know what will happen to me……

Life with Cancer, Entry#02: Love at First Sight

There are people out there who truly believe in the idea of “Love at First Sight.” I am one of them. You see, I met Mai (my lovely wife) by pure coincidence one fateful night in college.  It was my friend’s 21st birthday and a large group of us celebrated this milestone at the karaoke…

10 Things to Keep in Mind When You’ve Been Diagnosed with Cancer

  Getting diagnosed with cancer can feel like a death sentence, and in some cases, this is true.  However, much of our journey with cancer has to do with what goes on inside our minds.  Our outlook on just about everything becomes critical in defining what our experience will be like with this disease. There…