I have just finished reading a book by the American author Lionel Shriver,called “So much for that”. It was given to me and I found it profound and moving.
It is the story of a married couple, the husband has a dream of one day, leaving everything behind and going and starting a new life in a sunny and remote part of the world. He had sold his business and has nearly a million dollars,he has chosen a remote part of Africa,his wife though has never been too keen on the idea, so he decides to go anyway.
the day he is due to leave his wife tells him that she has terminal cancer and she will need his health insurance,hence he has to keep working in an awful job so they are entitled to health insurance.
The way this turn of events changes their lives is narrated with great clarity and amazing insight.
I have known a few people ( a couple from this blogsite,who are in touch with me),and I know that Rosie and Atiller have talked about this long journey, but one can only guess at their fortitude and their amazing patience and compassion.
I would say this must be the hardest thing in the world.
Such illneses change the personality of those who have it, they either make most of their remaining day,or they becoming inward looking and have a great deal of self pity, none of us know as to how we will react to such a situation if we were the victims.
The book also made me feel grateful for the NHS, the hoops the sufferers have to jump for the insurance to cough up the monies for the treatment and the commercial way medicine is practiced in the States. How much is a life worth one wonders.
I wonder if it is the illness which changes ones personality or does it bring out the worst in us?
I wonder how those who care for serious illness cope,I think it must be so very hard.
Is there a mechanism or a special attribute required? I would like to know.