By Billy Hallowell
A Pennsylvania family is dealing with the unimaginable. Just months after Nicole Roche, a wife and mother of three young children, went public with her stage IV cancer diagnosis, her family faces yet another health emergency: Roche’s 4-year-old son, Wesley, was rushed to the ER last week where it was revealed there was a large, cancerous tumor on his kidney.
Roche, who is self-employed as a photographer, disclosed the family’s struggles in a touching Facebook post Sept. 3, revealing her family’s journey as they navigate uncharted and complex waters.
In the vulnerable yet hopeful post, Roche opened up about her fears and her faith, ultimately choosing to trust God’s sovereignty in the situation and “surrender” it all to Him.
“Nothing [God] does is without purpose,” Roche wrote, while divulging Wesley’s diagnosis. “God loves our son more than I ever could with my human heart, and He has a plan for both of us, and He has designed it this way for us to walk the road together.”
She added, “I didn’t choose this, but I’m ready for it, I accept it, and I surrender to it.”
That remarkable trust comes as Roche copes with navigating her own treatments as well as the unforeseen path ahead for Wesley, who has been experiencing a great deal of pain.
She opened her Facebook post by explaining the path she has been on in the months preceding Wesley’s shocking diagnosis — a discovery that plunged the family into two intersecting crises.
“Exactly two months ago today, I made the decision to go public with my cancer diagnosis and actively share my story, no matter which direction it went,” Roche wrote. “I felt deeply that this diagnosis was a much larger part of my life story, and not something to be hidden.”
While the mother of three knew “there would be curveballs” in her own journey, she said she never expected to see one of her children simultaneously face a cancer battle. Despite lamenting “there are no words” for what the family is going through, she bravely detailed her and Wesley’s dual battles.
Roche said she took Wesley to the emergency room Sept. 1 due to severe stomach pain. Far from a routine finding, doctors discovered the little boy has a cancerous kidney tumor, and began acting quickly to treat it.
Wesley was rushed to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and underwent surgery Tuesday to remove the tumor, which had continued to cause him great pain despite pain medications. The surgery, however, won’t be the end of Wesley’s cancer journey.