Posted by: 2in10 | 07/25/2011

here I go again

…that is, write about something other than ovarian cancer directly.

My niece loaned me a book that I couldn’t put down: Kate Braestrup’s Here If You Need Me, published by Little, Brown and Company in 2007.

Braestrup and the love of her life, a Maine state trooper, had four children. He left for work one morning and was killed by an oncoming vehicle not far from their home. Drew had planned to attend seminary, and Kate decided to carry on with his plan herself. When she graduated she became one of the first chaplains to the Maine Warden Service, the department that conducts search and rescues throughout the state.

In June 2004 she was ordained a Unitarian Universalist minister, and she was asked to pray for the game wardens and law enforcement officers who were present to celebrate her ordination. She said, in part:

“May you be granted capable and amusing comrades, observant witnesses, and gentle homecomings.

May you be granted respite from what you must know of human evil, and refuge from what you must know of human pain.

May God defend the goodness of your hearts.

May God defend the sweetness in your souls…”

Throughout the book I love what she says about presence, being there for parents hoping a lost child will be recovered from the woods, a brother when his suicidal sister is finally found, or a rescue worker and later the wife when the snowmobile and fisherman are found beneath the ice.

I think you will like this book, too. And if you are dealing with cancer, it’s an uplifting read. It has its tough moments, many of them, but cancer brings plenty of those. And I hope you are enjoying the presence of friends, family and the professionals caring for you.

Best,

Carolyn

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