Saturday, March 16, 2013

A mother's request

Marilyn Kass recently posted this note about her 13-year-old daughter in a column entitled "Open letter to my daughter's teachers."  As "Momo," Marilyn has inspired many of us over the past several years.  If you get a chance, read through previous posts on her blog.

I wanted to inform you of recent developments at home that have the potential to impact Frannie at school. Though solid, centered and never more enthusiastic about learning, challenging health issues at home may impact Frannie in school and elsewhere . The breast cancer that progressed to my bones a few years ago has metastasized to my brain. Believe it or not, I am optimistic, even good humored. However, the world, and school is filled with misinformation, touchy subjects and a couple of jerks.

A class about mitosis dove deep into the obstacles associated with curing cancer, vs dying of cancer, vs battling a variety of treatments; from chemotherapy to radiation. Frannie came home with a slew of great questions, and while some kids hear “cancer” and think pink ribbon covered bicycle races, or imminent death, Frannie knows that cancer is what we live with.

Going forward, I ask that you be aware of the complex world she navigates. She is interested, inquisitive and the best thing you can do for her now is to engage her, listen to her and keep filling her brain with the learning she loves. Thanks to her I know about tectonic plates, ancient poems, nutrition and the power of point of view and that’s just from this week.

You probably detected that Frannie is a very private person, so while she knows I am sharing this information about our family with each of you, she would not be comfortable with your sharing it with the entire class.  Unless, you specifically discussed it with her in advance and agreed on the terms and details.

You can always call me to discuss any questions or concerns you may have. No surprise, there is no one, and nothing I am more interested in discussing than my daughter and her well being.

With gratitude and respect,

1 comment:

e-Patient Dave said...

What a titan of a woman. My gosh. How noble, astute, and compassionate to all. I'm deeply moved.