Love Is The Strongest Medicine: Notes from a Cancer Doctor on Connection, Creativity, and Compassion

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Bon Appétit!

Bon Appétit!

The flying trapeze was invented by the French acrobat Jules Léotard in 1859.

In 1983, I flew through the air.

An acrobat launched by a car.

A circus act indeed.

I was going to die.

Brain swelling up like a water balloon.

Respirations fading.

Rollercoaster loop-de-loops.

Hands in the air.

Strapped in.

Barely breathing.


Then the shallowest breath became air.

Terrorized by expressive aphasia.

Flattened by a brain that couldn't speak.

So many scars.

So many labels.

Good hour.

Bad day.

Ugly day.

Ugly face.

Why did I survive?

I don't know.

Family dinners?

Yes -- more family dinners.

Now I look around the table.

This shouldn't be.

But it is.

We're all going to die.

Me, twice.

Notice your dinner table.

Notice who's there.

Notice their faces.

Their effing beautiful faces.

Notice being with them.

By peering into their sublime souls.

By seeing past the meaningless minutiae.

By taking a bite of half-baked bliss.

Not eaten up by bullshit.

Bon appétit!