Here’s to love

Here is a toast to the miracle of love. Not to the romantic, chocolate, dance club nightlife type of love.  Not warm sandy beach vacation, new bigger home and grand Thanksgiving dinner love.  Not even baby’s first words love.  I mean power passion that gets us through the hard times, type of love.

Edna and Ken are 90, married and both have active cancer.  They have been partners for 62 years.  At least one of them is in our office every week for some sort of care.  They never visit alone, always staying close. Often they are in treatment chairs next to each other.  It is clear to all that they are very much in love.

This couple has no family and with the passage of time, few friends.  The burden of medicine, transportation, tests and treatment falls on their ancient shoulders.  When Edna is weak, she leans on Ken.  When Ken is ill, Edna guides him through.  They listen and answer together, often completing or correcting the other’s words.  In one moment they push each other to comply with medical care, and the next they protect from intrusive or harsh treatment.  They are a care team.

In them one senses depth beyond the medical bond.  They sit close and often touch.  They frequently tease and laugh, even making gentle fun of the other’s limits.  If Ken shuffles slowly down the hall, Edna promises to leave for a fitter man.  When Edna cannot eat Ken rants, to all that will listen, about how she has never appreciated his cooking.  He worries about her pain.  She frets about his blood counts.  There is deep respect and balance in their collaboration.  There is love.

I do not know what their future holds.  I do not know how they would get through without each other.  However, I do know that for now their love gives them the strength to continue with grace, comfort and dignity.

Therefore, here is a toast to love.  In love there is a life giving force.  In love, there is humor, trust and hope.   Love makes us so much more and love keeps us safe.  Love holds us together and love carries us on.

 

Happy Valentine’s Day

18 Comments

  • Hello there, You've done a fantastic job. I will certainly digg it and individually suggest to my friends. I'm sure they'll be benefited from this web site.
    • James Salwitz, MD
      Thank you very much. It is a way to reach patients that I do not have the honor of meeting. jcs
  • I'm really inspired along with your writing skills as well as with the layout in your blog. Is that this a paid subject matter or did you modify it your self? Either way keep up the nice high quality writing, it is uncommon to peer a nice weblog like this one today..
    • James Salwitz, MD
      Thank you very much. The subject matter comes directly from my daily practice of medicine. They are all patient care experiences I have seen (and felt) or I am trying to answer questions that my patients have asked of me. The writing is all my own. jcs
  • AMAR
    Thanks for all these nice words and feelings that go straight my deep heart. Thanks what you have done to my mother and me once i was so far from home.You must remember that i have named you as brother. Amar from Algeria
    • James Salwitz, MD
      It is an honor for me to hear from you and to have served your family. jcs
  • Thank you for this tender story, a testament to long love,so rare and precious. I enjoyed reading the wisdom of your reflections and subscribed so I could read more. If you get the urge I would welcome seeing your reflections on the intersection between spirituality and "compliance" or depth of engagement with one's own health. As a nurse, a chaplain, and a therapist, I am curious about your perspectives.
    • James Salwitz, MD
      Thanks for your thoughts. I think sprituality and involvement with health care decisions is a most interesting idea for thought. Will definitely pursue. jcs
  • Bob Pinkin
    The couple are an inspiration for dealing with everyday life and real love. We all need each other in so many ways. I hope I never need you as a doctor, but it is great having you for a friend.
    • James Salwitz, MD
      Yes, I think so too. They remind me of life's real priorities and possibilities. I too very much wish that you never need the my kind of services. jcs
  • Hello! I know this is kinda off topic but I was wondering which blog platform are you using for this site? I'm getting fed up of Wordpress because I've had issues with hackers and I'm looking at options for another platform. I would be fantastic if you could point me in the direction of a good platform.
    • James Salwitz, MD
      The site is www.elegantthemes.com : the theme is Chameleon. WP backbone. jcs
  • Splendid stuff, pretty much as I had come to expect from this site.
    • James Salwitz, MD
      Thank you very much. jcs
  • I completely agree with the above comment, the internet is with a doubt growing into the most important medium of communication across the globe and its due to sites like this that ideas are spreading so quickly.
    • James Salwitz, MD
      Thanks very much. The net makes possible the sharing and spread of ideas in a way never before dreamed. Jcs
  • Pat Fleming
    What a beautiful tribute to this couple.Their love story is truly remarkable.Aside from their health issues,there is nothing more beautiful and rewarding than still loving each other after 62years and growing old together gracefully or not.Thankyou for sharing this remarkable couple.They are an inspiration and we can all learn a valuable lesson from them.Keep up your blog and giving the loving care they both so deserve.
    • James Salwitz, MD
      Thank you. People such as these, who live their lives so well, are one of the great pleasures of practicing medicine. jcs

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