Sunday, October 9, 2011

Certainty With 50/50

Anna Kendrick and Joseph Gordon-Levitt in "50/50"
Hubby and I had a wonderful couples’ evening with my bff and her husband.  We watched the film 50/50, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Seth Rogen.  This film, having a cancer diagnosis as its main plot, got me wondering mainly about three things:

(1)  I wonder how many people I meet everyday (walking, shopping, riding the bus, eating in restaurants…) have been given this diagnosis and are now trying to deal with the news and the disease itself.  If I knew what they were going through, would it show on their faces?  What look would they have in their eyes?  Would it show more of fear, anxiety, questions, anger, sadness or resignation?

(2)  I wonder what I would do, what thoughts would initially cross my mind if I were to receive such a diagnosis.  I honestly haven’t thought about this and would need to ponder some more.

(3)  I wonder what I would do and how exactly I would respond if someone close and dear to me were to reveal that he/she has cancer.  I think I dread this more than the second thought above.  I have had family members die from cancer but I was either too young to fully understand what was going on or quite distant to truly feel the impact of it all.  However I have some vague idea as to the depth of pain and hopelessness this diagnosis creates and it is something I am not sure anyone can really prepare for.  I think a big part of the difficulty in battling this disease is precisely because of the sense of hopelessness it creates.  To me, there is nothing more defeating, nothing more draining to the human spirit, than the thought that you've run out of options, that there is no other way out or that everything is futile.

I liked the movie a lot.  It was funny, smart, touching and felt real.  Suffice it to say that it has left me with questions and hypotheticals to reflect on and that generally translates to at least 4 stars in my book!  


  1. I've lived it, 3 times this year...finding out someone I love has cancer. The first time was the worst one. All were shocking and unexpected but that first one was like a punch in the gut. It was devastation. It was a lot of tears. It was shock and horror. And eventually it turned to hope, admiration, more love, and respect. And that made hearing it the next two times just a little easier.

  2. I was only 21 when I received my first diagnosis, Hodgkin's Lymphoma. I was young and filled with magical thinking, and it never occurred to me I could die. I'm not sure - having barely begun to live life - that I understood just what there was to lose.

    On the other hand, that attitude (naive and oblivious) may just be what got me through a challenging four year struggle.

  3. I think about that alot too as the stats show someone close to me will indeed be diagnosed with cancer. Good questions and thanks for the movie recommendation

  4. Even if this is hope doesn't stand a chance, I hope everything turns out alright and that that stats are wrong.  Keep strong...

  5. When we are young we really tend to think we are immortal.  Some still think that in their older years but perhaps they've redefined immortality, which is great I think.  I only have the movie to help me imagine how it was for you when you received your diagnosis, Thom.  But I'm happy that you triumphed over it and that you are here with us with your wisdom and valuable words!  Thanks for sharing your story :-)

  6. *HUGS* to you Lalia...No one is strong enough for this diagnosis or this news.  The tears and devastation are expected.  But I'm glad to hear it turned to more positive things like hope and more love.  I guess what bridges the two sides, from darkness to positivity, is wisdom/enlightenment.  Thank you for sharing your experience with us :-)


Let me know your thoughts!