Partly because a good friend of mine is a family lawyer. Anything that gives me insight into her world helps me be a better friend.
And partly because exploring how people overcome non-medical adversity often gives me fresh insights and/or reinforces old insights on overcoming the challenges of Healthy Survivorship.
A Father's Love is the memoir of David Goldman, a young man who believed his family was strong and joyful when, in 2004 his Brazilian-born wife abducted their 4-year-old son to Brazil. For the next 5 years, Goldman devoted his life to getting back his son. His gripping story opened my eyes to the unfamiliar territory of custodial wrangling, international law, government intervention.
(From the Amazon synopsis) "Goldman describes in detail the wrenching emotions he went through...."
At first put off by Goldman's repetitive cliches to describe his agony, I came to care about Goldman and his son. Goldman's repetitive declarations of his pain served a useful purpose: They highlighted how the glamour of a crisis wears off quickly; the pain continues as long as the crisis continues. For Goldman, the five years were very, very long years.
For patients who are living with illness, the shock and excitement of the original diagnosis wore off long ago. For them, months or years of adversity cannot be captured in a few sentences.
In my next post, I'll share some of Goldman's lessons on Healthy Survivorship.