While analyzing the transcripts of interviews with cancer survivors and writing up her findings, the first author found herself suffering from a writer's block of sorts. She was stuck, unable to move forward, encircled by a cloud of voices. Some voices came from the empirical data of the study, others emerged out of her private personal experiences, and one materialized from somewhere altogether more mysterious, urging her to bring the two together. This performance text aims to evoke that struggle to grapple with the many ‘ghosts’ that haunt our research (Doucet, 2008), while also working through the challenge of telling a ‘true’ cancer story (Park-Fuller, 2008). Interviews with 26 members of Gilda's Club of Greater Toronto (a meeting place for people affected by cancer) served as the data that was analyzed utilizing narrative analysis. Excerpts from the interviews were woven together to create the lines spoken by the character of the father. Three additional speaking parts were created—the daughter, the ghost, and the narrator—to help explore themes of isolation, navigation, and reflexivity. Thus, this is a story about feeling lost as a person living with cancer. But it is also a story about feeling lost as a researcher. Ultimately, it is the story of individuals struggling to make the pieces of their lives fit together, struggling to make their way forward, without always knowing how to do either.
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