My friends and I are getting to that age, not that there is any right age for this sort of thing. It can happen at any age, but more and more a bad diagnosis for you or your friends is likely to happen the older and older you get. My friends and I have been dancing with each other for a long time, dancing like we know the steps when we do and when we don't, dancing when we feel more like crying and hiding, and being wonderfully brave and adventurous when we haven't a clue what dance we're doing. And then the bad diagnosis taps us one of us on the shoulder, cuts in, and partners us off to an unknown ballroom where the rules have nothing to do with us, except they do. And so it is for three of my go to friends.
Lettie Cottin Pogrebin is an old friend too. She doesn't know we're old friends. She's someone like me only on a national scale. She is one of the founders of MS magazine, and because we're the same age and because we're both Jewish we've always had a lot in common. Twenty-five years ago she wrote a book for me when I was beginning to figure out if I had a place in Judaism. She introduced me to her friends and I read their books as well, and I found my way. Some of them cycle back through her current book. I'm grateful I met them all.
If you are in the dark corridor of illness, your own or a friend's, if you're looking for a light to lead you forward, the title of this book is the beginning of everything you need to know.
Baruch ata adonai....I am grateful for health and the wealth of friends who guide me to unknown parts of myself. Thank you for waking me up this day. May I be a friend to others and especially to myself. Amen