A Mother’s Fear

September 12th, 2016 by Becky Komant

This past week I had to face my fears. The same fear that accompanied my son Matthew, his father, and his siblings. The type of fear you can only face in the refuge of a hospital. The type of fear only realized on the clipboard of a medical form. Every parent knows this fear. Every parent hates this fear.

We were heading to the BC Children’s Hospital in Vancouver for Matthew’s follow-up testing. My son was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in January of 2015 just after his 16th birthday. It was numbing. It was paralyzing. It was consuming.

Matthew didn’t deserve this. No one does. Matthew is a giver. He helps and he loves. It was incredibly difficult coming to terms with this fact. They say life isn’t fair, and this situation encapsulated that quote for me.

It put a pause on so many things in our lives. Practices, recitals, work, school, and even our sense of family. Matthew was the bright light on this journey, helping us stay positive while we hoped to avoid the most negative outcome. He amazed me everyday with his strength and courage. The outpouring of support that came from our community, our friends, and our family was also overwhelming. I can’t thank everyone enough. It’s a truly magical thing when everyone genuinely comes together for a cause. And I’m not going to lie. I needed it. We needed it. Six months of chemotherapy, going back and forth between the Children’s hospital and our home. It’s taxing.

Though always foreboding, this trip felt different. Matthew was feeling good. He was feeling strong. He took the tests and we waited. Do you ever pray? Because that day, we all did.

We received the news from the hospital regarding Matthew’s test. So much anticipation had built up to this moment. It’s not too difficult to sympathize with the rollercoaster of feelings a parent goes through during a situation such as this. Frustration. Guilt. Hope. Fear. Though one can imagine those emotions, no one can prepare for the mental strain brought on by the anticipation of a clean bill of health shadowed by the dread of your child’s relapse. The test results were negative. Our happiness was restored.

Matthew is now 13 months free of cancer. It’s the beginning of his grad year. His peers are happy for him. Our family is happy for him, and I bet he is simply happy for us.

We are so grateful for the BC Children’s Hospital and the Ronald McDonald House. Not only thankful for the amazing staff, but all of you who donate to these amazing foundations.

Matthew’s journey has not been easy but he’s touched so many lives in a positive way. Today, he is my hero, along with all the truly compassionate people who helped him along his path to recovery.