MEMBER SPOTLIGHT – Giulia Meloni
My name is Giulia Meloni and I am a member here at Cancer Support Community. I have been attending Kids Circle, a group where kids and teens with a parent, sibling, and or grandparent with cancer can openly share what is happening in their families or ask questions to further understand there situation. We do awesome crafts, we’ve had visitors who knit, make pizza and do karaoke with us. I have been a part of this group for roughly five years now and I have created friendships with other kids who understand my new every day. My friends at school and church try to understand what is happening but they have no clue how it affects people. I have actually had a good friend of mine tell me to get over it one day because I was missing my dad. Most people really don’t understand what facing cancer is like and let me tell you I’ve had a front row seat.
When I was 10, my mom told me my dad had to get surgery and I honestly didn’t think much of it. I just thought he had pneumonia and maybe they needed to fix something. I didn’t know what cancer was or how it could tear a family apart. I didn’t know it was cancer until my Mom sent my sisters and I to Kids circle here back in 2010. She told us he had Kidney Cancer and that he would be getting a lot of surgeries and we wouldn’t be able to do the things we were used to. Like biking, or the zoo, little things we didn’t think much about. He continued his various treatments because it was a rare form a cancer they didn’t know how to treat. This continued and we continued to go to kids circle every Tuesday, and I felt better going. I knew these other kids knew exactly what i was going through. Until 2012 when my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. I felt like my heart was going to fall out when my parents told me.
Two, both of my parents, why mine? Why no one else? These type of questions spun in my head and I didn’t know why it was only happening to us. I would ask my friends and their parents but the only person who had a genuine answer for me was Joyce at kids circle. She told me this isn’t the end of the world, things will get better, and this is training me for something important later in life. These words most people would believe are empty, kept me going. I had a strong faith in the future and that both my parents would fully recover. Luckily my Mom did and she’s stronger than ever, my dad wasn’t so fortunate. August of 2014 he was in UCLA hospital for months and I got to visit him almost every week, I know what it’s like to be in a hospital on a regular basis to know what food they have certain days, funny stuff like that. He came home in November in time for Thanksgiving even though he wasn’t able to sit at the head of the table like usual he was home and I felt safe. But by December of 2014 it was my dad’s time, and he left us peacefully in our home on hospice.
The worst part about cancer isn’t what it does to the person who has it but to the people around them who they love. This is a quote from American Horror Story I have really connected with, “when a child dies its immortality a parent feels but when a parent dies it is mortality a child feels.” It’s true my life now seems like it won’t last forever but that’s okay because I now have people that I love at kids circle who support me through every and any struggle I have. We laugh together and know what to say and when to say it especially thanks to Danny and Emily’s talking stick. I don’t know what I would do without them. Thank you so much Joyce for everything you’ve helped me through I wouldn’t have been able to get through all of this without you. I love this community and I love my family. Thank you.