by Kyle Klerk
Kyle knows all about living with what he calls, “The Incurable Curse.” A childhood cancer survivor, Kyle is in the sixth grade and wrote this piece as an essay assignment. His work earned first place in his school and is an illuminating look into what today’s cancer treatment looks like from a child’s perspective.
Slowly sneaking, creeping through you, silent, deadly, changing, transforming cells multiplying, and growing at an alarming rate, all happening inside, the conflict begins without a clue, without your knowing.
All of a sudden, one day, one moment in time everything changes, the words are spoken in quiet tones but it seems like a shout to my ears, it becomes life impacting, extracting your freedom, strong bonds tying you to your bed, holding you down,chaining you to a metal pole of poison.
Mysterious figures, clothed and protected in suits of plastic, gloves of rubber, hanging bags of neon liquid dread, connecting you by a tube, poison dripping through a needle into your veins, controlling all you do, imprisoned, ruled by time and beeps.
What choice do I have? Lay my head down? Give up? Never! Into the fray, fighting for what seems impossible! The Curse has struck; nausea and pain are my constant companions, the toxic medicine drains my energy, keeps me isolated, leaving my body open to other attacks.
They keep me here in this place to make me better, to give me life, though I’ve realized the struggle will never truly end, it has begun a lifetime of torture, mental and physical, an eternity of fighting, struggling against the effects of the supposed cure, grasping for life, for one more day as a regular kid.
Constantly receiving summons to appear before the medical tribunal, always more radiation, more tests and needles, more blood loss, I never will be the same, always wondering, pondering, what will the verdict be? Will this keep Incurable Curse of Cancer Away? Will another rival come to takes its place?
I am one of the Warriors, there are more of us than you can imagine! Why us? No one knows the answer. We are knights putting on our armor, bald heads going to war, strength and courage found in the smile on our faces, never letting the enemy steal the light of joy in our eyes, our war cry a laugh in the face of fear.
Many Allies have succumbed to this curse, lives fall every day, my heart aches with agony, I miss them terribly, but deep inside is the knowledge that others are also in the battle, experts, armies, continuing to work for a solution, a permanent antidote, waving the banner high, a golden ribbon, and I have hope, Hope that a true Cure for Childhood Cancer is within reach!