January 11th 2019
When my son was in 2nd or 3rd grade, a classmate of his became diagnosed with an extremely rare and aggressive cancer in her brain. Her name is Sajni, and she exemplified astonishing tenacity in her determination to continue to come to school in spite of the unfathomable amount of medical treatments she was receiving and the progressive disabilities she suffered to the end. She was “given” nine months to live, which she surpassed by almost a full year, embracing all her passions -school, friends, activities, animals- through to the very end.
We are friends with the family -not that I can recall or claim knowing how to be very useful or supportive at all- and the strength, steadiness and grace they exhibit to this day is literally breathtaking.
This week I ran across this Children’s Hospital blog post from her Dad, our friend Prabal:
This first line took my breath away:
Our daughter Sajni Chakrabarti was only 7 and a half years old when she was diagnosed…
Because Sajni was my older child’s age, I think of her as his age. But of course she did not have the privilege of growing up to be ten and a half. On the contrary, she was my YOUNGEST CHILD’S age –exactly– when she got this diagnosis.
Life is not fair and here today -on the day of my baby’s 7½th birthday- I sieze yet another chance to symbolically fall on my knees in abject, humble, helpless gratitude for all the ways that By Grace we have thus far avoided the existential Bell that Tolls.
My first drama teacher was notorious for saying, “Every day is a great day to die.”
I know it’s morbid but by holding the inevitability of death close to my chest I experience fundamental and profound gratitude almost all the time. Ergo this whole damn blog: “Sacred in the Mundane.”
Life is so fleeting, and sacred!!