Questions for the Oncologist

Read more on my mom’s decision to start chemo here.

August 26th, 2021 – Post #12

My mom, Beth Purcell, stopping to smell the roses
Stopping to Smell the Roses

Erica called me this morning saying, “Mom said she has a list of questions for her oncologist”. The most pertinent being, “Do ALL flowers and plants have spores in them?”

Why Can’t I Give a Cancer Patient Flowers?

She’s been told that she can’t have houseplants or flowers around, lest she get a fungal lung infection from the spores they produce. She’s not too happy about that.

It’s been hard enough to coax her out of her collection of throw rugs this year (after two falls) – plants and flowers are even higher on her priority list, so we aren’t sure how well she’ll follow the doctor’s orders on this, but thought we’d put out the word that it would be best not to send flowers from this point forward.

Poem for What Not to Get a Cancer Patient as a Gift

We weren’t sure how to say that, but here goes:

It came to my attention

That perhaps we ought to mention

Once my mom starts her chemo

Plants and flowers are a no-no

For when they are among us

Their spores can create a fungus

Though she dearly loves fresh blooms

She’s to banish them from all rooms

I hate to be the bad guy

But it’s better than the “fungi”

Thanks for flowers already brought

In the future just send the thought


Thank you 😊

To read more on my mom’s first round of chemo and see her new wig, click here.

*To read more on my mom’s cancer journey from the beginning, or share it, please click below:


I'm not sure what to say here: I once got second place in a dog-look-alike-contest? I know how to fold a fitted sheet? I'm pretty much a poster child for social backwardness - at least as far as social media is concerned; but I have some stories I think I'm supposed to share and am attempting to do that here, in this space.

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