Through my work with thousands of patients over the years, I have discovered that illness can serve as a catalyst for a new and improved life, if the situation is approached mindfully. Someone with heart disease, for example, can use the illness as an opportunity to get into and enjoy moving her body.
When I went through my own battle, the last thing I ever wanted to do was to "be a burden" on anyone. I'm not saying that I didn't have people close to me, but I would only let them in so far. And had you asked me about it up until last Friday evening, I would tell you that I would do it again the same way.
If you can relate to someone going through a difficult time, try to find the strength to let them know. Allow yourself to be vulnerable enough to revisit your own pain and to share it, in words or in energy. Let them know that you are there for them, and that you can empathize with what they're experiencing.
I don't want to die. I am healthy and active and merely 61-years-old. My 86-year-old father is a nationally ranked tennis player, reinforcing the belief that if I keep eating and living well, my genes will take me past 90. So, until now, I felt justified in postponing writing a will. Everything involved in creating one seemed hellish to ponder.