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    "When many cures are offered for a disease, it means the disease is not curable" -Anton Chekhov

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    Saturday, December 11, 2004

    Christmas Shopping: I spent the morning Christmas shopping with my two youngest children. One of the toys we came across was this spare brain. It's amazingly realistic - soft and sticky to the touch and covered with a clear membrane that contains a reddish liquid that sloshes around the brain itself - just like a real brain. We didn't buy one, though. The kids were spending their own money on gifts and they're both too miserly to indulge in gag gifts.

    On a more serious note, the local Hallmark shop has a corner devoted to breast cancer products. (That is one disease that has really taken off commercially.) There were breast cancer ribbon cookie cutters (although you could make that into a ribbon for any cause by changing the color of the cookie icing), breast cancer ribbon jewelry of all sorts, inspirational books, and even a children's book. Its inside was better than its cover suggested. Although, I'd probably have some hesitation giving the book to a child whose parent has breast cancer without discussing it first with their parents. You never know how a family has decided to deal with the big "C." Even little kids know enough about cancer to be scared by the word. (When my husband was a little boy, the doctor told his mom he had a canker sore. My husband was just learning to read, and "canker" was the way he pronounced the written word "cancer." Every sentence he had ever read with that word in it was a sentence full of doom. He claims he was terrified for days before his parents set him straight.)

    For parents with cancer, the book When a Parent Has Cancer : A Guide to Caring for Your Children, comes highly recommended. I bought it as a gift once, and had the opportunity to look through it before sending it off. It's very well written, and its author speaks from experience. She's a doctor, a cancer patient, and a parent. But again, the etiquette of sending books like this is tricky. My gift went unacknowledged, and I'll now never know how (or if) it was received. But I've always had the uncomfortable feeling I must have committed a faux pas in sending it.


    posted by Sydney on 12/11/2004 02:11:00 PM 0 comments


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