‘Chasing Life’ Recap: ‘Clear Minds, Full Lives, Can’t Eat’

By Christine M. Sellers,

On this week’s episode of Chasing Life, April worries that her treatment will affect her future, Brenna tells Kieran she isn’t ready to make their relationship “official” yet, and more shocking news is revealed about Leo.

The episode opens with a cop leaning over someone and asking for their name. Off screen, viewers hear April tell the cop her name. After that time rewinds to the previous day.

April wakes up in Dominic’s apartment and is seemingly calmer than she was the night before. Dominic wonders if her knowing the truth about her secret sister, Natalie will bring her family closer together before mentioning he has a surprise for her during their date later. April kisses him and when she pulls away, Dominic reassures her that everything will be okay. Cue theme song.

After the opening credits, April returns home from Dominic’s to find her mom, Sara lying on the couch. April tells her that she didn’t have to “wait up” when she texted saying she was staying with Dominic. Sara responds by apologizing for her behavior when she found out about April’s condition. In addition, Sara asks April to let her “be there” for her during her treatment, so they can figure things out together and expresses her desire to attend April’s doctor’s appointment with George to discuss chemo. Surprisingly, April allows her mother to accompany her. April tells Sara she’s scared she’s going to die.

Once April has finished talking with her mother, she meets Beth and they chat for a bit. Beth wonders if being truthful with her family has made April’s life easier, though April feels it’s exactly the opposite. April says her condition is all the more “stressful” now that her family knows, because she has to worry about everyone else’s feelings besides her own. Unwilling to keep rambling on about her condition, April changes the subject and asks Beth how her job search is going since she quit waitressing at the café. Beth says the outdoor screening she attended with Brenna, Greer, and Kieran really inspired her fashion-wise and she’s now trying to make her own clothes. She gives April a horrible looking blouse she made for her and April says it’s “unique” in an effort to spare Beth’s feelings. Beth sees through April’s white lie and realizes her creation is awful and that she should’ve been more keen on using measurements. April lets her know it’s at least a start.

At school, Brenna and Chelsea are talking about a recent Bar Mitzvah Chelsea attended when Greer suddenly interrupts and asks about April. Brenna doesn’t say too much since Chelsea is still unaware of what’s happened, and soon enough, Greer seems to catch on, changing the subject. She invites Brenna and Greer to a “Save the Bay” party at her house. Brenna responds with a “maybe,” while Chelsea informs Greer that they’ll definitely be there. Greer walks away, seemingly pleased. After she’s gone, Chelsea reminds Brenna that she hasn’t made any plans with Kieran, so there’s no reason for her not to go to the party. Brenna caves, and when Chelsea leaves, she stares at Greer from across the courtyard.

Meanwhile, at Support Group, one of April’s cancer comrades is upset because her boyfriend told her he couldn’t handle dealing with her cancer and she found out he’s seeing someone else. The other members gathered there rally around her. April is the next to share. She tells everyone that she’s really sad, because it seems like everything that makes her life full is “slipping away.” Leo walks into the room listening to April address her peers, but hangs back.

April and Sara meet with George at the hospital later on to discuss her treatment plan. George tells them he won’t be April’s doctor and refers her to another physician named Dr. Hamburg. When they start to get further into what will happen during her primary round of chemo, April and Sara clash over how much information they’d like to know about the process, and eventually, April leaves, frustrated. Her mother continues to talk with George, asking about the side effects of chemo. He mentions things like nausea, mouth sores, increased rate of infection, and most devastatingly, potential infertility. Sara becomes concerned that April will withhold treatment if she learns about the possibility of potential fertility problems and asks George not to tell her.

At the same time, Brenna meets up with Kieran for coffee and he becomes jealous when the barista flirts with her. In addition, Brenna informs Kieran that her mother knows about April’s leukemia.

Following her appointment with George, April heads off to work and asks Paul if he has any open assignments available for his column. He begins to list off prospective ideas when Raquel interrupts, telling them that gubernatorial candidate, Bruce Hendrie put in a personal request for April to interview him. He’s shooting a campaign commercial and April will be shadowing him on set. Raquel makes a snarky comment, to which April responds in an equally catty manner.

Next, April is out with Dominic on their date. They discuss Bruce Hendrie’s request, speculating that it was probably Leo who specifically asked for her, while Dominic takes her to her surprise. He brings her to a food crawl.

April spends the night at Dominic’s again and gets sick while he’s asleep. She encounters his roommate, Graham in the kitchen and he thinks she has bulimia. April assures him that she’s not bulimic, so then he asks her if she’s pregnant. She tells him she’s not pregnant either.

The next morning, April returns home to find her mother, Beth, and Brenna sitting in a circle on their living room floor. Sara explains that they’ve formed a “meditation circle” in an effort to relieve stress and anxiety and asks April to join. April is reluctant to try her mother’s relaxation technique, but soon joins in anyway. After a few minutes, April says she can’t do it and needs to be at work, because “every minute counts” now. She begins to rush up the stairs, but is eventually forced to slow down when she has trouble breathing.

Soon enough, Bruce Hendrie is shooting is campaign commercial on health care reform and discusses his special interest in the topic because of his son’s brain tumor. On cue, Leo jumps into the frame and screws up his dad’s commercial on purpose. When the director calls cut and suggests that they break for lunch, Bruce and Leo bicker. A few moments later, he realizes April is on set and discusses her interview.

Meanwhile, Brenna and Kieran are making out, when suddenly, Brenna decides to stop. Kieran asks about making their relationship “official,” but Brenna says she isn’t ready for that yet, because of what’s happened with April. Kieran comforts her by sharing a quote from Socrates on death.

Back on set, April is interviewing Bruce and asking him where he stands on certain “hot button” issues. The interview ends abruptly, however, when Bruce is informed that filming needs to resume. Bruce’s campaign manager asks if April will be using information obtained “on the record” only and she responds, saying she’ll need to discuss that with her editor. Leo suddenly interjects, telling her to use all of what she got, since everyone knows the best stuff always comes from off the record. In addition, he says he’s not needed on the set and tells the director they can CGI him into the commercial before walking off. April gets a text from her mom, but doesn’t send a reply, choosing to follow Leo off the set instead.

April insinuates that Leo is a spoiled brat who values his trust fund too much. He doesn’t refute her claims, telling her that his cancer has forced him to become dependent on his parents and he doesn’t like it. He mentions his life before the tumor when he lived in Paris and worked at a bakery, saying he was much happier then. Leo doesn’t like everyone “pulling his strings” now and tells April she shouldn’t let anyone do that to her, either. Leo also laments how he won’t have a future and mentions how chemo can cause infertility. April is shocked to hear that, and after a brief squabble where Leo tells April she plays things “too safe,” she jumps on the back of his motorcycle and they drive away. They end up at a car dealer and Leo decides to test drive an extremely expensive looking sports car. He hijacks the car from the dealer with April inside. April thinks he crazy for having just committed a felony, but then he offers her the steering wheel and her outlook changes.

Brenna and Chelsea have decided to go to Greer’s party. Chelsea suggests they take a “grand tour” of the house, but Brenna doesn’t seem to dig the idea and ditches her. Chelsea asks Brenna for her phone, because she wants to take pictures and has no memory left on her own phone, so Brenna gives it to her. Instead, Chelsea pretends to be Brenna and texts Kieran that she’s at Greer’s party and she misses him.

April and Leo are still driving when a passenger in a nearby car compliments them on their nice set of wheels. April is sad she might never have a future with a husband and kids of her own, so Leo tries to comfort her. They share a brief kiss before the police catch up, realizing they’ve stolen the vehicle. Leo gets out of the car and falls to the ground. The police think he’s faking, but April tells them he has a brain tumor. The cop leans over Leo’s body and asks April for her name. Now, viewers are all caught up from the start of the episode.

At the hospital, April visits Leo and tells him that neither of them is in trouble. A doctor enters several moments later and asks April to leave the room, but Leo says she can stay and hear whatever news the doctor plans to give him. The doctor tells Leo his tumor has grown and he’s now considered “terminally ill.” He has three to four months at the most. Leo bitterly informs the doctor that this is “old news.”

Back at the party, Brenna finally spots Greer and they catch up. Greer asks about April again, but then apologizes when Brenna mentions how things are hard and she hates how people keep forcing her to talk. Then Greer shares a personal anecdote of when her grandmother died and Brenna thanks her, seemingly feeling better. Greer notices Kieran walking into the party and the two part ways so Brenna can meet up with him.

April is still at the hospital when Leo’s parents show up. They thank her for letting them know what happened and express their fear of losing him. When they walk into Leo’s room, he’s not there. Leo’s doctor calls security.

April finds Leo on the edge of the hospital’s roof, about to jump. She questions why he’s deciding to commit suicide when he’s always telling her to live her life to the fullest. Leo disregards his previous advice, claiming he wishes to speed up the inevitable. He jumps, and when April begins to panic, she sees him hanging safely on a nearby ledge with a smirk on his face. April isn’t amused. Leo tells her not to worry anymore and suggests she go on more adventures.

Brenna is happy to see Kieran at Greer’s party, but doesn’t think going into Greer’s room is a good idea. Kieran ignores her and they sit down on Greer’s bed and kiss. Greer walks in a few seconds later, angry, and asks them to leave. Chelsea also appears wearing a wedding dress and holding a bottle of wine, clearly drunk and spewing all kinds of nonsense.

April finally returns home to find Sara cleaning. Her mother is concerned that April hasn’t been in touch all day. April lies, saying she was super busy at work. She asks if there’s any waffles in the fridge, because she’s hungry, but Sara tells her she threw them away in favor of more organic food. April is angry, because for the first time in a while, she’s actually hungry and she can’t have what she wants. April storms away to her room to find her curtains gone, her mattress stripped, and plastic everywhere.

Sara soon catches up with her, explaining she’s sterilizing her living environment before chemo. April is even angrier now because her only personal space in the entire house has been invaded. To add more fuel to the fire, April mentions that she knows chemo can cause infertility. Sara is also angry now and lets it slip that she asked George not to tell her that. All the more infuriated, April tells her mother she isn’t a child and doesn’t need protecting. She also tells Sara she wants to go to a fertility doctor before she starts treatment. Sara tries to reason with April, but April can’t be persuaded. April says the only way she can get through treatment is if she has some hope of living a “normal” life once it’s over. She remains firm in her decision to reschedule her chemo until after she has seen a fertility specialist.

Chasing Life airs every Tuesday at 9 p.m. on ABC Family.

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