While many people’s first instinct after hearing a cancer diagnosis is to fight, others choose to forgo the treatments and make the most of their time rather than spending their last months in a stuffy hospital being poked and prodded by doctors and nurses.
Just two days after her husband of 67 years, Leo, passed away in July, this 90-year-old woman from Michigan named Norma was dealing with her own health crisis. Doctors found a large cancerous mass on her uterus, which would require surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy.
Instead of resigning herself to months of brutal treatments, which her five-foot, 101-pound frame would likely not survive, she boldly announced to the doctor that she would be ‘hitting the road’ instead. “We explained to the well-meaning doctor and his student that we live in an RV and that we will be taking her wherever she wants to go,” Norma’s son Tim wrote in a post to Facebook. “He didn’t hesitate to say, “RIGHT ON!” We asked if he thought us irresponsible for this approach. His reply was telling.
“As doctors,” he said, “we see what cancer treatment looks like every day. ICU, nursing homes, awful side effects and honestly, there is no guarantee she will survive the initial surgery to remove the mass. You are doing exactly what I would want to do in this situation. Have a fantastic trip!”