My best friend in elementary school had a mom with metastatic breast cancer. Even at the time I knew it was really tragic, because you could just look at her and see the sickness, if you know what I mean.
She had been through almost all the treatment options out there -- breast cancer surgery, radiation, etc. -- but nothing worked permanently, the cancer just kept coming back.
I remember going over to their house for the first time and being shocked when I saw her mom without her bandana on -- she was bald from the radiation therapy, and that was the first time I had ever seen a bald woman.
Well, my parents moved, so I left that school and lost touch with my friend, but I still think about her and remember what it was like to be around someone that sick -- it really is as hard, in a different way, on the family as on the patient. So to those of you in a situation like that, you have my everlasting sympathy.