Saturday, March 31, 2007

L'Chaim !!! (To Life !!)

This week I've been funeral-ing and sitting with a friend who has had a diagnosis that is simply not good ...
One of the funerals was for a woman who attained the tender age of 107 ... the other two were for people who went before their time ... all of them were moments of profound reflection on life and death ...
But today I was sitting with a family having a discussion about a diagnosis of latter stage cancer in the parent ... one of the children said - "I don't know if I'm ready to deal with --- dying of cancer ..."
I quoted Monty Python, complete with the accent when I blurted out - "But they're not dead yet ..." Which brought a smile from everyone, and laughter from the patient, who said - "that's true, I'm not in the box YET !!"
We then talked about what it means to LIVE with Cancer, and how (to borrow from Patch Adams), dying is the process that comes in the last few minutes of life when the brain is starved for oxygen - everything else is LIFE and is to be lived. There were no simple or easy answers today for the family or the patient - but the midst of the tears there was laughter, smiles and an all important affirmation of the preciousness of life, and how we MUST savour and enjoy it moment by moment.
Life is such an awesome mystery - why would we waste even a second of it ????

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