Tuesday, May 20, 2008

On Teddy Kennedy, brain tumors and life

Today's big news: Senator Ted Kennedy has a malignant brain tumor. Whatever political stripes you wear, you have to feel some degree of empathy for what he and his family are now going through.

As I slowly edit the pictures I took in and around my father's hospital room, I find myself thinking about how fragile we all are, and that at the core, we're all just as liable to be struck down by some uncontrollable illness as anyone else. Power, it seems, can't protect us from the inevitable. Of course, what is power anyway if it can't stop the inevitable?

Whether you're from a political dynasty or an average working family, I hope you'll take a moment to head outside and breathe in the world around you. You just never know when even the simple joys will suddenly be taken away.

Your turn: If you could share one snippet of advice with Mr. Kennedy, what would it be?

7 comments:

Miz UV said...

I'm not the best one to ask, since I've just been through a horrible thing with a family member, but I would say skip the chemo and load up on all the painkillers you can get. Nothing worse than being sick as a dog from chemo that doesn't work anyway only to realize that you've spent your last three months being totally miserable for nothing.

Wordnerd said...

I've never been on the same political page with Mr. Kennedy, but I do feel empathy for him and for his family. My advice to him, or to anyone, would be to surround himself with the people that mean the most to him and foster those relationships. Work, and policy, and Washington will be there long after he (and we) are gone.

Sara said...

I think I would tell Mr. Kennedy - "it's not over till it's over - and don't let those headline grabbing "ho's" get to you!"

I felt so bad for him today listening to the news (which was on and on and on and relentless) - they practically had him in his grave - and the successor picked! It was like Give Me a Break!!!

Roth Family Adventures said...

It's not something I talk about ever, but I'm a brain tumor survivor. I was fortunate that mine was not malignant and was an a very easy area for removal. It involved three 16+ hour surgeries when I was five, six and 17-years-old. I don't have much when it comes to advice for Senator Kennedy, other than to stay strong. Miracles do happen.

Dak-Ind said...

i wonder if they had to do a colonoscopy to find Teddy's brain (tumor)...

yeah thats irreverant.

i feel for the Kennedy family, they have had some horrible blows and everything for them is so public that the rest of us can only marvel and be glad isnt our families. advice? be a kennedy, keep up the fight.

colleen said...

Sometimes I wonder how we live as long as we do. Seems like so many things could go wrong to hurt or kill us.

Hearing about Ted Kennedy's tumor stirs up a sense of great loss in me, for what might have been had his brothers and MLK not been assassinated. I wish there could be some closure for Ted on that.

lissa said...

I know what his family is experiencing...but they have to do it in a fishbowl.

I would advise him (and them) to turn off the TV news. It seems as though every colleague and media hound has the man dead and buried already and that is so NOT the case. This isn't great news but it may not be a lost cause and if any family knows how to survive, it's the Kennedy family.

I've had the privilege (yes, I'm a groupie) of meeting several Kennedy members several times over; having vacationed on Cape Cod for the first 25 years of my life, we spent many hours at the airport waiting for my father or grandfather to land from Boston airport's connecting flight. The Kennedys passed through there often, and I met the Senator as well as Ted Jr., and various other members (the Shrivers as well). My shining moment was having hot chocolate with Jackie O. Okay, she was having coffee.

Okay, she was having coffee at the snack bar and I had a hot chocolate a seat away from her but still!!

I digress...but it goes to show how they cannot escape public eye and to have to go through what he's experiencing, splashed on front pages and the 'net...I think he should (and hope he has) enjoy the quiet away from the cameras...