Friday, August 25, 2006

A different sort of dilemma

Hi everyone:

We are finding today that we are facing a new and unexpected dilemma, and for once it doesn’t directly concern Patty’s health. When we started this blog, our intent was to chronicle Patty’s experience in as complete detail as possible. In part, the goal was to provide information to a number of people in an efficient and appealing fashion whenever they wanted, without loading everyone’s inbox with email about Patty’s latest pedicure. In part, our intent was to illustrate our respect and admiration for those who provide medical and other care for Patty. It has also been a record of Patty's relationships with family and friends. More than anything, though, and more than I would ever have anticipated, this blog has become my personal tribute to my wife and best friend. Patty considers it a special gift. As foolish as this may sound (and I can’t believe I’m sharing this), I feel like as long as I keep writing Patty will always be alive.

Now, to the dilemma. Some of the medical professionals caring for Patty have expressed anxiety over how candid I am being in presenting their views, actions and photographs within this blog. I was perhaps being naïve, because I somehow always thought people liked to be recognized for what others admire them for. I certainly don’t want to make people uncomfortable or to embarrass anyone – except perhaps Patty, and she chooses to be with me anyway. What I was told, though, was that some of these professionals may choose not to be as candid and complete in their answers if they feel they will be quoted publicly. This is a risk we cannot afford to take, because good information is what helps preserve our sanity in these situations.

Going forward, I will continue to try to provide a full picture of what is going on, without specifically naming the sources of that information, or sharing pictures of them at work. There’s a part of us both that finds this really unfortunate and sad, because we admire these people, and putting them on the blog makes us feel like we’ve adopted them within our circle. It’s funny – Patty and our family cope pretty well with the harsh reality of her situation, but we seem to fall apart over stuff like this.


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