Vikram Macherla was preparing for National Spelling Bee: reading about duct, ductal, ductile, ductility. He remembered a post-it note ‘DCIS, next week’ on the refrigerator and that week has gone.

The parents were having ‘our time’ in their room that overlooked a rough park in New York. Nevertheless he walked in: his father was contorting his face seeing him coming, and his mother was talking to her folks in Telugu, animatedly. “Mom, you forgot about DCIS.”

Mom was overwhelmed with his reminder, teary.

Father asked, “What is that?”

“Ductal carcinoma in situ is a non-invasive breast cancer, daddy.”


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