Monday, December 08, 2008

Love, Bravery, Determination

A week ago today Lily, the cute seven-year-old little girl, apple of (her grandmother) my sister's eye, was diagnosed with leukemia. Out of the blue a suspected bladder or kidney infection - worrisome but not unusual or all that scary in a healthy, active, bright, cheerful girl - became something very scary, cancer. And the world of that little girl, her sister, her mother my much-loved niece, her father, her grandparents, her classmates, her extended family was upended.

Great strides have been taken in the treatment and care of leukemia patients in the last few decades. My family has learned a lot about this disease in the last few days. And we have learned a few things about ourselves and each other. My sister has written today about what she has learned this week. I think her words are valuable reading. Here's one sentence that I have found true several times in my life, but never made more plain than in watching the loving and brave and determined responses of my great niece, and her parents and grandparents to this terrible trial:
I’ve learned that you can drive yourself crazy asking “what if?” and “why?” And after agonizing over all the questions, nothing is changed. The only thing you can control in a situation like this is your own responses to it.

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