FIGHTING BACK: One Mother’s Story–Chapter Six

| June 19, 2017

Traffic into New York City had been bumper to bumper. I was late. Valerie, my five-year-old, was in Babies Hospital one month after her last chemo. It was January 12, 1972, the date marking the end of two long, difficult years of shock and turmoil for my small family. This time, her checkup was for […]

FIGHTING BACK: One Mother’s Story–Chapter Five

| June 5, 2017

Ed and I worked hard. We had no options. Our major medical had maxed out at $20,000—that was gone in an eye’s blink—and the slew of doctor and hospital bills on the corner of Ed’s desk showed no signs of diminishing. Besides that, there was the need to eat. Our new company, E & S […]

GRAND ROUNDS: THE PARENT’S SIDE

| May 2, 2016

A GLIMPSE OF BEHAVIOR I gave the following Grand Rounds speech to doctors and medical students at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center in April 2016. My husband Ed suggested I post it on my blog Unexpectedlives.com. I agreed. I thought about what I would say in the days before the speech and A Medical Problem […]

It’s the Bounce that Counts

| April 1, 2016

 Resilience. Let me explain: It’s like a tennis ball. Sometimes in a game the ball skips away from you. You swing but you miss. And you have to work harder, whether it’s the next serve or the rally that follows or it’s the next game. It may even be the next day. You think hard […]

A MEDICAL PROBLEM THAT WON’T GO AWAY

| February 1, 2016

 Robert—our daughter Stacy’s husband—and I were standing quietly outside the double doors that led to the medical center’s intensive care unit (ICU). It was early in the morning and Stacy was inside the unit on a respirator. The doors were closed. We had been asked to leave while the nurses took care of the patients. […]

INFORMED CONSENT AND CANCER: The Contrast Between Henrietta Lacks and McKenna Wetzel

| December 14, 2015

A few weeks after I finished reading The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, a 2010 biography by Rebecca Skloot, an article in the Newark Star-Ledger popped into my head. The article, about McKenna Claire Wetzel, and written by Sandy Kleffman in 2012, was headlined Killer Cells donated to find a cure for other youngsters. I […]

CANCER: Emperor of All Maladies

| November 15, 2015

How many of you saw the television version of Cancer: Emperor of All Maladies? Hmmm. Well, let me tell those of you who didn’t see the documentary just a bit about it. As you might know, both Valerie and Stacy, our only children, were caught in the web of cancer. Valerie was diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma, […]

Spring Blossoms

| May 1, 2012

Hi Dear Readers: A blossom of information has already bloomed and awaits your attention. The Valerie Fund, an organization that supports comprehensive health care for children with cancer and blood disorders in New Jersey and New York City, has been serving sick kids and their families for over 35 years. To observe the occasion, The […]

TOOTING MY OWN HORN: And Hoping I Don’t Blow it

| April 1, 2012

In January, I was told that I had been chosen as an Outstanding Woman of the Year in Somerset County by The Somerset County Commission on the Status of Women (SCCSW); the award category was for Public Service. A dinner to present the awards was to be held in March to celebrate Women’s History Month. […]

From Now to Then and Back Again

| May 1, 2011

My husband Ed and I had dinner a few Saturday nights ago with four of his old friends from the Weequahic section of Newark: as a Connecticut Yankee, I was the outlier of the bunch. Their reminiscences about the Newark neighborhoods always seemed to go on forever and usually embraced the same stories. And always, […]