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Showing posts with the label life and death

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Fathers Who Harm

Father's Day has become a more highlighted day of celebration than when I was a child. My father was born in 1927 and lived a pretty long life: he died in 2013, a few months into his 86th year. He was not a bad father. He did struggle with alcohol addiction and was imperfect in other ways, but he was basically loving and kind. He was a workaholic, so we did not have access to him for emotional affirmation, but he told me in his old age that he always loved everything about us kids and felt sad that he had not been a better parent, and he was sorry he was most of all that he had not spent more time with us.  Other men in my family– my grandfathers, my husband, son, uncles, brother– have all shown themselves to be good guys and have adult children whom they love(d) and who love them back.  But I think to myself, having been a social worker to women and children who fled lives with men who put them and their children through Hell, that there are probably a fair number of children, te

If You Got a Cancer Diagnosis, What Would You Do?

A cancer diagnosis can be a little too much to swallow at the moment it is delivered. So, you go to the doctor to get something like a mole checked out-- you think maybe you will have it frozen off, like your friend Bea suggested.  The next minute you hear:  “Hmm... this doesn't look good.  I'd like to schedule an appointment for a biopsy.” And next, your well-intentioned doctor begins blasting you with descriptions of treatments and protocols (whatever protocols are?) that you must listen carefully to, and do right away.  Your head feels like it might explode. How you proceed can mean the difference between life and death... Chris Wark understands this all too well. In December 2003 (just two days before Christmas!), when he was just 26 years old, he was diagnosed with advanced cancer. It was definitely NOT the Christmas present Chris was expecting, and he was immediately rushed into the cancer treatment system, but a decision he made a few weeks later changed