On Gifts

The Death Project

When I first received this diagnosis, I also received a gift. (No, I will not offend anyone who is suffering directly or indirectly from cancer—or any other misfortune—to suggest that cancer itself is the gift. Cancer is just shitty luck, which any of us can get no matter what good or bad choices we’ve made in our lives. And I would so gladly give it back if I could!) The gift I received, virtually at the same moment as the diagnosis, was acceptance. (I’m calling it a gift because it was just suddenly there for me.) This gift has proved incredibly valuable. It has meant I have been freed from a range of difficult emotions and reactions one might expect with a terminal diagnosis. Most wonderfully, it has meant no anger, denial, desperation, or despair. I have also been most blessedly free of depression, fear, anxiety, and bitterness. This is…

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