Maddy was diagnosed with Ewing's
Sarcoma, a type of bone cancer, when she was 13. Her sister Lucy, who conducts
this interview, was 16, and Benjamin was 11 weeks old. In an attempt to
learn how Ben understands the surgical treatment that his sister required,
Lucy has this conversation with him. Benjamin is now three-and-a-half,
and the "rainbow" he refers to is Benjamin-speak for Maddy's crutch, painted
with rainbow colors.
you know how you walk, and I walk,
Mummy and Daddy walk?
how Maddy walks different from that?
B: She's got a rainbow. Not
all the time. But when her leg is sore, she must use her rainbow.
does Maddy need her rainbow, Ben?
B: Cause she's leg is broked.
leg is broken?
B: Yup. It can't work.
why do you think Maddy's leg doesn't work? What happened to it?
B: I think a T-Rex comed along
and roared and bit it, and it got broked!
you really think that's what happened?
B: No... Maybe.
Benj, this is very important. I want you to think really, really hard before
you tell me, okay?
did Maddy's leg get broken?
B: The bad persons did it.
B: They maked Maddy cry.
are the bad people, Benj?
B: They's very, very bad.
They cutted her leg with a sword.
Maddy's leg always broken? Was it ever like your leg?
B: In the photos. When I was
in Mummy's tummy.
right, Ben, just a few more questions, okay? How do you know Maddy's leg
was cut with a sword?
B: Cause you can see the owie.
On her leg, here
(indicating his own thigh).
Maddy's leg mean she can't play with you sometimes?
B: She plays soldier games
with me! She goes, pow, pow, and kills the bad persons.
about other games? What about football?
B: Maddy is bad at running.
Her leg gets puffed. She can't play with me and Kyle.
that make you sad?
B: Yes. She can't give me
piggybacks when I get tired.
Maddy's leg ever get better, do you think?
B: She goed to the doctor
and he said, "No, we cannot make your leg get better." But they cutted
was to make Maddy's leg grow bigger, remember?
B: It didn't get better.
but it grew some more.
B: Why for did the doctors
not fix it?
tried, Ben. They tried really, really hard.
B: It was too broked?
B: Will it ever get unbroked?
B: Another day?
B: Lucy, will the bad persons
don't think so. Why?
B: If they comed back, I would
shoot them, pow, with my gun.
would you do that?
B: I will grow up big and
strong, bigger than Daddy, and I will kill the bad persons.
B: They hurted my sister.
They maked her sad. I will shoot them, and my Maddy will be happy. I want
my Maddy be happy.