The season’s finale of The Big C, starring Laura Linney, touched my soul. Cathy, who has Stage IV melanoma, and won’t live much longer without a miracle, has gone to the hospital for Interferon infusions. When her teenage son, Adam, discovers keys to a storage locker in her handbag (where he’s rummaging for $20), he takes them and jumps on his bike. Opening the locker, he sees a snazzy red sports car and dozens of beautiful packages. As Adam makes his way around the room looking at the cards on the gifts, the camera pans in on the messages: “Happy 25th birthday.” “Happy 26th birthday.” “Happy college graduation.” “Merry Christmas.” All of the card are signed “Love Mom.”
A giant photo of Cathy and Adam hangs on the front wall of the locker, overlooking the plethora of presents. Adam, a typically obnoxious teenager until now (despite his mother’s terminal illness), breaks down, and so do I.
Cathy can’t bear the thought of not seeing her son grow up. At least the gifts she’s bought before she dies will carry a piece of her to her beloved child for many years.