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

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Stay for a While

Stay for a While

I was going to leave the planet.

But was I?

Or was I still going be here?

Just six feet under.


At 13 years old, I was on my bike and hit by a car. 

My injuries were grim.

My left ear dangled.

My skin was lacerated from jaw to collarbone.

The pinkie finger on my left hand was nearly severed.

My right leg was broken, the tibia piercing the skin.

But the most serious injury wasn’t visible.

My brain had suffered a traumatic impact and was swelling more with every passing hour. 

In the ICU, I stopped breathing.

A nurse called my parents and told them to come, that I was dying.

Before my mom and dad could make it to the unit, the team working frantically over my battered 13-year-old body brought me back.

I’ll never forget the face of my doctor, as it was the first thing I saw when I came back to life.

That doctor was who I wanted to be.

The doctor bringing people back to life.

I was going to leave the planet.

I decided to stay for awhile.