Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Keeping things in perspective

Right. So it does kind of suck for Bob not to have a job right now, but there are worse things. Like CANCER. Two people on my blog roll are dealing with it right now. One I know personally - Tammy from FoodontheFood who is my neighbor in addition to being a ridiculously funny and talented woman. She is also the mother of two little boys and she has breast cancer. She is 37 years old. She is being very funny and brave about it on her blog but WOW does it really stink that she is dealing with this. And there is no history of it in her family. She is having a mastectomy this week. Fortunately her family is relatively close by and available to be of assistance. But we are also all here for her. As I have told her 435 times since I found out about her diagnosis.

Then there is A. Scott White's wife. Scott writes the blog Caveat Emptor. I don't actually KNOW Scott, or his lovely wife, but she is dealing with cancer of the esophagus. And I guess this is not her first round with the evil disease. He has been blogging about it and comments on it on his FaceBook page.

And then there is my other neighbor's mother, who is in her 60s and was diagnosed in November with breast cancer. She had treatment and is doing really well. We were talking about it last week through the fence as she was babysitting the boys.

But seriously. I will take a loss of a job over dealing with cancer any day. Having Cooper in my life has had a not unexpected effect on my thoughts on death. I am not afraid of dying, I never really have been. I have always had strong feelings about HOW I might die, because there are methods of leaving this life that I would rather not experience. But dying is not the issue. Now the issue is who is left behind. I have known people who lost one or both parents while still young, and that is NOT FUN. They say women who lose their mothers at an early age measure their lives by that moment in time - and once they reach the age the mother was when she died, it can be very difficult because now the child is forging ahead in life with no example to look to. They are now treading ground that their mother never did and it is hard to move forward. We consciously and unconsciously look at our mothers' lives for examples of how to do, or not do, things.

I am fortunate. My mother is still among the living, as is her mother. I have boat loads of life examples to look to. I have been well prepared for my own experiences as a parent, as a person. I will admit the examples have sometimes left me saying "Well, I will try to do THAT differently" but even that has its purpose in life. They are strong and great women and I am grateful for them.

But I don't even like to think about what it would be like for Cooper to have to forge ahead in life without one of his parents. And I am praying that Tammy's and Scott's children will have a long life ahead growing and learning from and about their respective mothers.

1 comment:

scott said...

Actually, Susan (my wife) has never had cancer before. She did have a tumor on her brain stem back in 2005, and had to have major BRAIN SURGERY to have it removed, but it turned out to be benign. This cancer in her esophagus may have existed at that time, but it was not detected. Like most people with esophageal cancer, Susan didn't notice hers until it was large enough to give her trouble swallowing. By then it was Stage IV and metastatic.

Thanks for your kind words. Morale support, however intangible, is always encouraging.

Hello, Michele.