I first got involved with Bryan and Karen as their lawyer. They needed one.
Their insurance company denied treatment for a bone marrow transplant. It was the only hope; it was the last ditch effort to save Karen in her fight against breast cancer. I fought hard against the insurance company. While they called the treatment experimental in Karen’s case, they covered it under government insurance plans. We fought for two months—maybe more before the company finally relented and provided coverage.
By then it was too late, and the cancer had spread even further. Karen passed quietly, sweetly even and left behind her husband and three children. In the months that followed, I can only imagine the gaping hole that existed in their family. Friends took up some of the slack, and invited the kids over to their house to play and keep them occupied.
One story grips me. Bethany was the lone girl. She carried on the same spirit as Karen. It was one of those chill, windy spring days when the sun is breaking through but still cold enough for a jacket. And there was Bethany—swinging on the swingset. As she drifted under the sun , she turned her face upward and closed her eyes. The wind lifted her red locks ever so gently. And Bethany smiled, peaceful. It was a scene too perfect to interrupt.
But when Bethany finally stopped swinging, she told us the story of her peaceful swingset reverie. You see her mother always told Bethany to look for the wind. And when the wind caressed her face, it would be her, Karen, kissing her face and telling her that she loved her. Bethany still remembered.
It really is only those things that we give away that we keep. What are you giving away today?
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Published November 1, 2011