According to his ex-wife (Kanye’s ex-stepmom), Ray West was diagnosed with stomach cancer last spring and is currently being treated for it.

The ex-wife, Cheryl, says that “he’s getting treatment and from what I understand the treatments are working.”

Exactly what kind of treatment being done (chemotherapy? medication?) and the seriousness of the illness have been left unclear, as Cheryl commented more on Kanye’s recent breakdown/breakthrough, connecting it to his father’s diagnosis.

“Sometimes you need other events to trigger bigger events,” she said of the diagnosis, “it could have triggered something bigger in Kanye because he is super close to his dad after his mom’s death.”

The death of Kanye’s mother is something that should be very familiar to fans of Kanye’s music. When she was healthy, he wrote the classic, ‘Hey Mama’, thanking his mom for everything she’d done for him. Although “Kanye was very close to his mother,” says Cheryl, “one of the things that I recall is that that he never really grieved [her] and went back to work right away.”

Perhaps, but for anyone who listened to 808s & Heartbreak, which Kanye made in the year following Donda’s death, it’s clear that the love of which Kanye sings is not solely romantic.