I read this article this morning. You can read it, or just read my commentary.
https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/i-survived-8-cancer-battles-here-are-5-life-lessons_us_5a0f29d7e4b0e30a95850684 (Remember, I am new to this, and not a computer geek, so I have no idea how to make that little thingee that says “here” for this like, without actually showing the whole url……)
I read it because the title suggests the article contains life lessons. And there are days when I believe I also have life lessons to share. But then I guessed the author and I have different definitions of “life lessons”.
I was hoping for themes like: “Finding Light In the Darkness”…”Creating Motivation From Nothing”…”How To Really Know When It Is Time To Call a Halt To Treatment”. Instead, she wrote about knowing family health history and how to negotiate with doctors and insurance companies. Topics I could – and have – found in waiting room pamphlets.
And yet, I have learned a most valuable lesson from her. I can’t share my preferred topics with you, either.
First of all, if you have never been seriously or terminally ill yourself, all the information in the Huffington Post article is important to you. By all means, gather every detail you can about your family and ethnic health history. It can save your life. Also, pay close attention to the political and employer battles on health insurance when it is not an issue for you. Because understanding this information and negotiating with corporations while in panic mode can never end well for you.
What you can’t prepare for, however, is the emotion that no one can possibly explain to you. I cannot describe to you the knowledge that the greyhound at my feet right now will be my last dog… or how a certain combination of temperature and setting sun recalls for me memories when everything seemed possible…or how often I have to restrain myself from punching someone who calls me “strong” or “brave”, or tells me how “good” I look.
Unless you die instantaneously in a car accident, or we all die together in a nuclear holocaust, you are going to figure out that there is no way to communicate some of the life lessons we can only learn alone. Usually in the middle of the night. Always unexplainable. And completely frustrating.