Young adult caregiver: What my wife’s cancer experience taught me

When you’re a young adult dealing with a cancer diagnosis, you realize that planning for the future is a luxury. However, as my wife Suzie taught me throughout her time living with cancer, joy can be found in the most unlikely of places. Suzie was only 26 when she was diagnosed with a rare head and neck cancer in 2017. Even though she was living with metastatic disease, she cherished every day that was hers to live. Whether that meant jumping in an RV to spend a week at a festival in the desert, or building her own greeting card business during hospice care, she never let her pain or discomfort get in the way of doing what she loved. Despite the challenges we faced during Suzie’s treatment, she taught me to be grateful for even the smallest things and savor every moment we had together. Headaches lead to cancer diagnosis Suzie and I first met at a college bar in Gainesville, Florida, where, during college, she worked as a waitress and I as the DJ. She was the type of person you just wanted to be around — wise beyond her years, compassionate, and sassy when she wanted to be. After moving to New Zealand together and getting engaged, we got married and settled in Boulder, Colorado, where Suzie began her nursing career in an OB/GYN clinic. While she was studying to become a nurse practitioner in October 2017, Suzie started experiencing painful headaches. We thought they were caused by the stress of the program or uncomfortable office furniture. But after two weeks with no relief, she talked...