Let’s get started!
In this section Dan discusses a variety of experiences.
- He touches on his relationship with his brother David and how their relationship evolved after his transplant.
- He also tells us about how sometimes little things that nurses or doctors do can have a profound effect on us as patients, even if they don’t realize it.
- He tells us the story about shooting some of his medical staff with a water gun to regain respect and reclaim his hospital room as his own domain.
- He tells of his friends bringing him a basketball hoop with encouraging phrases written on it for his hospital stay.
- The largest section from my assigned pages was about Parole. He tells us about his visits to a prison to help prisoners who are about to go before the parole board. He learns that prisoners sometimes fear being released because of the lack of structure and certainty that comes with being imprisoned. Dan says at the time he couldn’t understand that mentality. Years later he’s in a similar situation being released from the hospital after his transplant. He suddenly is overwhelmed at the idea of being out on his own. He shares the fear and anxiety that overcame him when he is told he will be discharged the next day. I related to this part so much. To go from the constant watchful eye of a medical team to being out in the world, in charge of yourself again is terrifying.
– Whitney C
These pages evoked many different emotions at each stage of the journey Shapiro presents. Here they are in bullet form:
- The IV – the bane and curse of any chemo patient, when they don’t listen to you and don’t understand that having chemo kills your veins and they use you as a pin cushion until they reach the same conclusion – there IS only ONE good vein.
- Life goes on between treatments – I’m sure most can relate to this, you find strength to move on – you go back to doing ‘normal’ people activities. You move on with your career, whatever it may be. You think the ‘cancer’ chapter of your life only to have it strike back with a vengeance. Cancer is truly an empire that strikes back (sorry, had to – total Star Wars nerd here).
- Jodi’s story, that was such a hard moment, a stark reminder how not all of us win the war against cancer. Like any war, there’s always casualties, and they hurt. When he got the same hospital room as her – what emotions must’ve been there, all the memories flooding back with tears. But the honouring of her memory with the poster was wonderful and special.
- His relationship with Terry reminds me of how there’s always that one person that sticks by you through the cancer journey. Sometimes it’s family, a partner, an old friend, a new friend or an organization that connects with. You never knew how much you needed them before, but now the support is so important. Love and kindness take on a whole new meaning. And it makes you stronger so you can face what’s next. There’s always a next.
Let’s see what the next pages of Shapiro’s journey bring.
– Delia M
Join in next Monday for comments and discussion on the next 20 pages of the book!
Thanks for joining us for pages 80-106 of Mom’s Marijuana by Dr. Dan Shapiro! Join in next Monday for the next 20 pages of the book!
If you’re just joining us, here are some logistics:
The chapters and sections of this book are organized differently than in a book we’ve read together before. So instead of going chapter by chapter, we’ll go about 20 pages at a time each Monday. We’ll use one more Monday to talk about general feelings from the book and anything else you’d like to discuss. Join in, in the comments every week! At the end, we’ll have a book club discussion via video chat! Also, there will probably be spoilers. Read along with us!
How are you enjoying our young adult cancer book club?