Happy Belated Mother’s Day, Ladies!
By Nick Nyaga
Yesterday, May 14th we celebrated Mother’s Day. We sent messages to our mothers. And we posted messages on Chat Groups, even those for men. Because everyone has (or has had) a mother. For some, it was a day to replay the memories of their mothers. Good memories, bad memories, sad memories, joy and sadness in intermittent flashes.
My mother would have been 85 years old this year. But cancer took her life twenty years ago. She was at the prime of her life. At the time her grandchildren were in their teens and at the age, they truly connect with their grandmas. Then she was gone. Gone after many years of pain and agony. We took her to every hospital we thought able to help (including The Nairobi Hospital where I was Head of Finance). They did their best, but none could match cancer’s determination to triumph. If I’ve ever felt defeated, it was at the suffering and death of my mother at such a young age. And cancer has continued to take thousands upon thousands of people, and at every station of life. I doubt there is anyone in this country who has not lost a relative, friend, workmate or neighbour to cancer.
After my mother’s death, I decided to find all there is about this terrible plague that appears so indiscriminate and has no cure. What is it? What causes it? Does it really have no cure, or is it that we have not looked hard enough? With HIV & Aids, there was talk that it was created in the laboratories in the West and unleashed on us, hapless Africans for economic reasons. Like slavery and slave trade of yore. Could the same be true of cancer? I will give you the facts and arguments and leave you to make your conclusions. Like every disease and human calamity, cancer thrives on people’s lack of knowledge, unbelief or inaction. Cancer is preventable and it is curable. But we must understand what cancer is.
I have followed the findings of many researchers on this subject. Dealing with cancer is like going on a journey, a long journey. But so is cancer. Cancer is not like malaria or tuberculosis (TB). It doesn’t strike like a venomous snake. No, it is subtle but sly. It humors you even as it fattens you for slaughter.