For the Craig family, “real” is football in the living room.
“Real” is mom making coffee in the kitchen.
But real is also the tough stuff. The kind that’s hard for most to even imagine.
“I have tears going down my face, because I’m like, she’s going to lose her husband,” dad John Craig says. “And my 4-year-old son is going to lose his father. And having to think about him having to grow up without a daddy, man.”
Craig has rare cancer NUT midline carcinoma in his head and neck.
He and his family have decided to be real with thousands of strangers, sometimes live, on Facebook, as “The Candid Craigs.”
“People want authentic,” he says. “People want, just not the surface.”
Videos go back, from the first biopsy results, a doctor telling Craig and his wife their fears of cancer were true, to countless treatments, and a surgery, removing part of Craig’s jaw and replacing it with his shin bone.
“I’ve been super duper anxious,” he says in one pre-surgery video. “I feel like I’m in the twilight zone.”
One of the most recent live videos shows the young couple and their sleeping 4-year-old son in a doctor’s office, where they are told to start thinking about hospice care.
“I need for you to do that for your family,” a doctor is heard saying.
“We’ve been married for three years,” Alexandra Craig says. “And here we are talking about, we need to know how to carry out your wishes.”
So why do it? Why broadcast this most intimate, trying time to thousands of viewers?
“To help people, even in the darkest hours, have a sense of hope,” John Craig says.
“If they can perhaps see somebody have a glimmer of hope despite a very grim circumstance,” Alexandra Craig says.
They’re hoping even through their own darkness, they can be a light for someone else. The family is told the average survival for this cancer is nearly seven months.
That’s where they sit, now.
“We are praying for His will to be done,” Alexandra Craig says. “And to give us the grace and strength to walk through whatever path that is. Whether it is me having my husband, or if it’s me remembering my husband.”
For this family, it’s all about faith.
“You never really know that faith is all you need until faith is all you have,” she says.
A fundraising page for the Craig family can be found here.
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