“Never lose at home” – yes, another sports metaphor. I’m sitting here tonight watching the Boston BRUINS and Washing Capitals in the first round of the NHL playoffs. Our youngest daughter Logan is in the kitchen preparing tonight’s meal and my bride rests on the couch under her favorite blanket while the men of both teams attempt to bend the twine while skating at top speed into the corners, winning the battles, winning the face-offs with an all-important mission of winning tonight’s contest. This sports metaphor where men from all nations play with one uniform, under one coach, for one city, do so with one goal in mind; to win the Stanley Cup. Is there any difference here at home? We [family] all share the same name, we live under one roof and we’re guided by one principle; live large and be safe. Yes? Our nurse navigators are our “coaches”, the game we’re playing is beating cancer, and the team we’re on is family, the same family we started when the nuptials were read, and when reality met you after emptying your luggage and sharing your honeymoon photos with friends and family. We are all in this together and as I watch my youngest take care of business in the kitchen it reminds me of how great a job we did raising her. She’s only sixteen years old, so I realize there’s a number of doors left unopened on her horizon, though as she slices the celery as if she was on “CHOPPED” while preparing the salad I know in my heart we did the best we can with her. Treating/Beating/Dealing with cancer, from where I sit, is pretty much the same – first the diagnosis, second comes the acceptance and rounding third heading for the plate is recovery. Cancer will not be won or loss in the period of a seven-game series, and obviously I understand this is not always the case for each individual cancer patient and his/her support system, but without family … what do we really have? We cannot kill a penalty on our own; we cannot do the bills, the laundry, the cooking, the 40+ hour work week, the lawn, the kids, and all the little things that seem to arrive at the door without help. Feel free to comment if you disagree with what I’m talking about here or any other post on this “Finding Inner Strength” blog. You, the reader, are also part of this support system. I feel as though I was forced into this rant during the 10 minute intermission between periods, but hey, dealing with your time the best you can with the time you have is extremely important. The chef is cleaning up the kitchen … the table is set … my bride continues her slumber and I’ve still a half pint of Sierra Nevada’s Ruthless Rye in front of me with hopes of another goal from the BRUINS. Stay healthy you guys – call her at lunch, surprise her in the morning, give her a hug when you get home. We need each other, because, as they say, you are to “never lose at home”.