The Power of Hope

Diana - Canton, Michigan
Entered on October 8, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family, hope, illness
  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

About five years ago I found out that my Dad had a brain tumor and was dying. I was still very young and this happened to be the first serious illness a family member had that I could understand the seriousness of. I was in eighth grade at the time and it was a huge blow to my family and myself.

It all started when I was called out of school early. The teacher got a phone call in which the office attendant asked her to send me to the office. When I got there my mom was waiting in the lobby. This was weird to me because I never got in any trouble, and my grades were fine. I remember thinking maybe she was taking me out for something fun, so I waited until we got into the car before I asked what it was all about. My mother told me that it was my Dad; he had to be rushed to the hospital for an emergency surgery. At first I thought it wasn’t that serious but when my mom explained that he fainted I knew there must have been something seriously wrong. My mom proceeded to tell me that the doctors found a massive brain tumor that had engulfed the whole right frontal section of his brain. When I heard the full story I was devastated. It felt like my heart had sunk into my stomach and I could feel the blood drain out of my face.

When we arrived at the ICU I saw my dad; he looked terrible. He had a huge bandage over his whole head including his eyes. The only thing exposed was his mouth. There were tubes in him everywhere. He looked so bad, but there was still hope inside of me. After a few minutes the doctor showed up in the room and said it wasn’t looking good. He said that the tumor was cancerous and it was a really bad one called Gleoplastoma multi form. This type of tumor is known as the worst tumor you can get. The doctor then went on to say he might have 11 months to live. The thought of my dad dying ate me up inside. How could my young and energetic Dad have a cancerous tumor that would take his life? It wasn’t fair.

When my dad finally woke up I remember him asking what happened. His reaction when we told him haunts my mind and probably will for the rest of my life. It was so much harder to hear my Dads reaction then hearing the news for the first time. I guess it is a lot easier to have hope when your not the one on the operating table.

My family and I went day by day, week by week just waiting. After the first month, my Dad’s treatments really got the best of him, it made him so sick that he just didn’t want to be alive anymore, but I never gave up hope. I felt like if I gave up hope I was giving up on him, and I couldn‘t do that. Today, five years later, my Dad’s cancer is in remission. He is healthy, and although he had to get part of his brain removed, he is still the same Dad I love. I believe in hope because hope saved my fathers life. He survived the worst kind of brain cancer, and now spreads the gift of hope to cancer patients all over Michigan.