Someone special sent me the picture above last week, it just makes sense. I know everyone wants us to be happy but let’s be realistic….we lost Molly two months ago, I am a single father raising two daughters which one just started middle school, and we have a one year old Pug that really misses his mommy. If I told you we were okay, wouldn’t you think I was nuts? Continue reading
From: Arash Golbon [mailto:agolbon@XXXXX]
Sent: Sunday, August 16, 2015 4:14 PM
To: XXXX, Leonard
Subject: Thank you-Hamburg Germany 1986
Dear Professor XXXX,
I do not expect you to remember me, after all it has been almost 30 years. A very cold day in March of 1986 in Hamburg. That day a father and his son walked in to your consulate with very little optimism. We had just left Iran in hopes of getting a student visa to California. For me as a fourteen year old kid there were two choices, go to California to live with my aunt or go back to Iran and face possible death as in those days kid solders were used as a disposable commodity to clear minefields.
Last November a well meaning lady told me that Molly & I should live out our lives, so of course I wrote about it. The comment didn’t sit too well because we have always “lived out our lives”, and didn’t need cancer diagnosis to get us started. But as I started meeting more patients I started understanding what the lady meant. Continue reading
When you have kids, you want to protect them from all the evils of the world. You monitor their friends, their screen time and do what ever you think may rob them of their childhood innocence. I remember my parents trying to hide my cousin’s death, but I could see from their body language and whispers that something was wrong. Now I understand why they were doing it.
I find passing of time funny….well may be not funny but more like intriguing. I felt it took an eternity for me to turn 10 and another lifetime to turn 20. When you are a child you can’t wait to get older. There are all these milestones you look forward to. Sixteen to drive, eighteen to vote and mother of all birthdays twenty one to drink.
Out of all my birthdays twenty one was my favorite.Unlike my other milestone birthdays, I actually had something I looked forward to. When I turned sixteen there was no car for me to drive, and at eighteen I had moved out of my dear aunt’s house and was working through college. Turning twenty one actually meant something, I could finally go out to bars with my friends and pretend to be an adult. The ironic part of turning twenty one was that the day after my birthday I went to Europe where there are no drinking age. Also I am really not a big drinker, I get terrible hang overs.
After twenty one, I really didn’t look forward to any more birthdays. Thirty sucked because I thought I would be a hot shot millionaire by then and by forty I knew better. Actually forty was the best, I had my family and a great job. I was on top of my game and thought nothing could ruin it. Then came my favorite year 2013 and life gave me the big middle finger.
Before Molly’s diagnosis, I lived life for the next event. I used to plan my next vacation while I was actually on vacation. I constantly looked forward to next big event, and missed what was going on at that moment. This made time to go on hyper drive.
I can no longer live that way, not because some guru has miraculously thought me to live life for today, but more because I can’t. I still plan trips and events but with the understanding that they may not happen. For example Molly has a business trip in April which I am planning on joining her at the tail end for much needed vacation time. I planned everything months ago knowing full well that it may not actually happen, and when Molly was in ER few weeks ago I knew it may very well it may not.
Now to our surprise not only Molly’s oncologist gave her the green light to go, but actually encouraged her to go. Great, I will believe it when I am on the plane and actually there. Does this bother me? Well it would be a lie to say no, but it is part of the new reality.One positive thing is that time has slowed down again and not on hyper drive anymore. I feel sometimes it’s actually dragging, kind of like when I was 10.