The Kominsky Method: The Cancer Is The Least Of Your Worries
Well, folks… This week was awesome. I binged hard on the second season of The Kominsky Method, and I loved every minute of it. I managed to watch all the 8 episodes of the second season in just one afternoon/night and it was amazing. I can safely say that the second season is a much-welcomed improvement on the rocky first season and in some moments, it really moved me. I was on the verge of tears in more scenes that I care to admit.
The humour is fantastic, the acting is top notch, the casting choices were brilliant, and I really appreciated the themes that were touched and explored in this season. Death and illness were some of the prevalent themes in the second season of The Kominsky Method and frankly, those were the things that really moved me. Case in point the lung cancer that Sandy Kominsky (Michael Douglas) is fighting in the second season. SPOILERS!
Look I come from a long family history filled with cancer. My mom had it (breast cancer), her father had It (brain cancer), and the list goes on and on. Cancer is rampant in my family, but I noticed something in the second season that I also noticed back in 2008 when my mother was fighting the cancer.
There’s an inherent secrecy and stigma surrounding the disease. And just like in Sandy’s case, my mom chose not to tell me about it for some time. She feared that I would worry too much and that I would flunk all my exams at the university, that I would get an ulcer from the stress and so on. Like all great moms do. I know that she was protecting me from the dangers of cancer, but I know realize that at the same time she was protecting herself as well. From what was to come.
In the early months of her cancer battle, only the members of the immediate family knew about it. Me, my sister, my dad and her brother (my uncle). But just like with everything else, you can’t really keep secrets for too long and the news that she had cancer spread quickly. The secret was not much of a secret and then the real torture began. Seriously.
My mom is now a kick-ass thriving cancer survivor (more than a decade after her cancer diagnosis) but back then, her battle was an emotional hell. And I’m not talking solely about the disease – believe me. Every single one of her neighbors, colleagues, friends, acquaintances and extended family members would come to our house and mourn her. Literally. Like she was on a god damn death bed. They would cry, moan and talk about death like they were talking about the god damn weather. It exhausted her more than the fucking cancer, more than the chemo and more than everything that she went through.
I wanted to punch every single one of them in the face. And I even put a sign on the front door that read.
–If you came here to make my mom cry GET THE FUCK OUT!
It was the last thing that she needed. She needed positive thinking, she needed good energy, she needed laughter and support. And apart from me, my sister and my dad all she got was crying, mourning and depressive thoughts from everyone else. It was horrible.
So, I totally get why someone would choose to keep their cancer diagnosis a secret. The consideration of worrying the closest and dearest is always present. But the emotional burden is also a huge pain in the ass. The stigma is also there and the fear of being treated differently is excruciating. My mom didn’t want anybody to feel sorry for her, but it’s in the human nature to pity the unfortunate. She got exactly that. It sucks but it’s inevitable I’m afraid. She was mourned, she was wept and she hated it. But it taught us a very important lesson.
When you’re dealing with cancer, the cancer is the least of your worries.