Thursday, November 11, 2010

Lay Your Hands Down. (Live Through This Part II)

I think, thus far, the toughest thing I've ever had to do was to accept the fact that there was nothing more humanly possible that could have extended Alan's life in a dignified way. And the next toughest thing was enduring our friends' suggestions and offerings to call doctors they knew, explore one last treatment idea etc..., once we had reached that horrifying conclusion. Obviously, those gestures came from love and desperation to save a very special life, beyond worthy of saving. Yet offers like that, in the eleventh hour, when every resource had been thoroughly exhausted were difficult to field, to digest. It is monumentally challenging to face the searing truth that nothing more can be done. It goes against the fiber of our beings. And once you are able to come to terms with that, however crippling it is, the extraneous attempts from others can make you feel as though you're giving up, when in fact you're finally accepting that everyone has done all that they can do, to restore that life in a healing way.

What drives you in the fight against terminal disease is the hope for a cure, or a treatment that might add time to one's life. And Alan's family and I left no stone unturned. We sought multiple opinions, conducted extensive research, consulted the NIH for trials, scoured the internet for case studies, and asked for help from others throughout the country who might have a lead toward something. Anything. Alan endured more than enough scans and treatments and experimental drugs and prayers.

He wanted life more than anyone.

We all wanted life for Alan more than anyone else.

Much of what he did, was for us.

But there is a time when the expression "quality of life" takes on profound meaning. There is a moment when you must really look at that beloved person who has been through so much and have the courage to wish for them


And so, if you know someone who is journeying through such an unforgiving landscape, trust that those around them would have walked to the ends of the earth for them. And in many ways, did.

No one ever stops wishing for a miracle. Ever.

If assistance is needed they will ask. It is kind and loving to want to help, but offer gently, and have the sensitivity to step back and say no more.

Nature is indescriminating.
It just gives and gives, and then takes everything back.

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