Zach kept his emotions tucked away pretty tight. He never seemed caught off guard by the bad news, but I was never really sure if it was because he had planned for it or if he was just skilled at rolling with the punches. He was stoic as the news was delivered and was pragmatic as treatment options for pain management were discussed. He behaved as though we were at a routine appointment and the world wasn't crashing down around him.

I was blindsided. … There was the part of my brain that tumbled around with emotion, and there was the side that was ready to move forward with the next practical step: Okay, Zach is dying. Now what?

We had to make some tough decisions. None of them led to the future we had fought so hard to gain for Zach. They all ended with him dying; it was just a matter of how soon and in what shape. Did we continue to hack at his body and remove the cancer, leaving him with more hospital time and weeks, maybe months, of recovery? Did we hunt for experimental treatments across the globe, taking Zach from home for weeks or months and possibly gaining nothing? Or did we simply declare "enough is enough" and walk away from the fight?

Laura Sobiech in "Fly a Little Higher"