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Weekly Reader 11.17.11

A Mom’s Heart-Wrenching Story

“Notes from a Dragon Mom” will likely leave you in tears but it is so heartfelt that we wanted to share it.  For a parent, there is no greater heartache than losing a child.  Parents of terminally ill children carry that burden with them long before death occurs.

Author Emily Rapp is the mother of Ronan, an 18-month-old  born with Tay-Sachs, a rare genetic disorder.  She tells how she copes with his terminal illness by being a dragon mom: “fierce and loyal and loving as hell.”  She describes, without asking for pity, how she gets through each day, knowing that his physical condition will only worsen and that she can harbor no hopes and dreams for him.

The last paragraph of her piece carries a message for all parents:

But today Ronan is alive and his breath smells like sweet rice. I can see my reflection in his greenish-gold eyes. I am a reflection of him and not the other way around, and this is, I believe, as it should be. This is a love story, and like all great love stories, it is a story of loss. Parenting, I’ve come to understand, is about loving my child today. Now. In fact, for any parent, anywhere, that’s all there is.

Helicopter Grandparents?

Last week, author Barbara Graham endured—for the fifth time in  a year–a “miserable, sleepless night scrunched up like a sardine,” as she jetted across the Atlantic to visit her granddaughters who live in Paris.

In “Are We Helicopter Grandparents? ” she wonders why she is so obsessed with her grandchildren.

I didn’t know what to expect before I became a grandmother five years ago, but I certainly didn’t anticipate falling so hard. After all, I’m a happily married working woman who prizes her independent spirit. I have a life. I never would have predicted that I’d feel like a teenage girl with her first crush — even now, five years and two granddaughters into this granny business.

I long to be with them, even though after several days I feel so exhausted I can hardly remember my name. And it’s nothing short of a miracle if I don’t come down with one of the viral bugs that seem to proliferate around them like mosquitoes in a swamp. Still, I wouldn’t trade my time with lespetites for anything — and I have plenty of company.

All we can add is enjoy!

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