Friday, March 25, 2011


I have been injured several times in my life.  I have experienced pain that I consider extreme.  When visiting a medical professional they would ask me to describe my pain on a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being the most excruciation and 1 being extremely low.  I have a very high threshold of pain.  So when I judge my pain at 3 it maybe an 8 for another.  Pain is relative.  Does that make my pain less than theirs?

My son was diagnosed with a brain tumor at the age of 11.  For almost two years he fought the tumor and never had a good response, never a break.  He died just past his 13th birthday.  My wife stayed with him when he was in CHOP almost constantly.  She witnessed scores of children die in the oncology ward over those two years.  Those children were stoic and compassionate.

My wife has little compassion for well children who throw tantrums to get toys or food.  The relative pain these children and their parents feel is not even in the same universe as the ill children in the oncology ward.  Yet these well children and their parents fell their pain is unbearable.  In this time of virtual reality, I wish they could feel the pain of the suffering and put their pain in perspective.

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