This is a very old picture of me. I find it one of the few that I like, because one really cannot see much and so I find I have little to criticize about how I look or don't look. Ah, vanity.
This was taken at a time when I still enjoyed hanging out in bed. I was able to enjoy it, because it was not imposed upon me. Nor was it something that I was finding to be an all too common imposition for others that I knew and for whom I cared.
Now, on those few days when I do feel like I can get up easily, I can actually enjoy some time laying there and reading.
But I wanted to write, not about my difficulties, or the many numerous afflictions that we as humans are prone to host. I wanted to speccifically about cancer. There are few people I have ever encountered who have not had some close relationship to it. In my case, it has afflicted several members of my immediate family.
Both my mother and my brother suffered from it. Perhaps it would be better said that they suffered from the cure, but they lived.
My mother's breast cancer made itself known in the early sixties and the treatment at that time was brutal. She was a most remarkable woman and made every attempt to hide the pain and difficulty that she had following a radical mastectomy and radiation treatments. I recall her talking to me in the last months that she was alive, decades later, waiting to die from congestive heart failure, about how the exercises to keep from losing the use of her arm after all the muscle tissue had been removed, was the hardest and most painful thing in her life. (My mother's life had been extremely painful and so it came as a surprise to me.)
My brother's cancer has not made any reappearance in a very long time and we seem to have forgotten about it most of the time. Because I respect him and feel it is his story to tell, I don't wish to write about it here without speaking with him first, but I am so grateful that he is alive and the proud Papa of two beautiful boys.
I have felt somewhat useless lately for reasons of my own, but in that down time have been hatching a project that I think might be helpful. I have much more to iron out as regards that, but I do urge all of you to do what you can to help make this world a healthier, safer and more peaceful place. Let all beings live without suffering. susanne/sopha d.