Sunday, April 27, 2008

Shelo ne-dah

My good friend Ms P joined me for lunch yesterday and told me a little secret, and you know by now that I cannot be trusted.


She told me that the book she has been working on for quite some time will be launched on Mother's Day. Ms P has been working for CanTeen on a book which aims to help young people cope with the realities of having a parent who is sick with cancer. The book is also published as a website.


The title of this post is a Hebrew phrase which we use in my family from time to time. Literally translated it means "that we shouldn't know". We use it when we talk about the hardships of life - illness and death being most prominent. At this point, I would use the phrase in this way : "Here is a very special resource which would be immensely helpful if you know a young person whose parent has cancer, shelo ne-dah." I guess it's like a little prayer that it would be nice if no-one knew such hardship.


My friend Ms P has an extraordinary gift for taking the hardships of life and spinning them into gold. I held her little book in my hands as if it was a newborn baby. She ensured that I kept it swaddled and supported its head while I cooed and gushed.


Then we had another glass of red and drank to life.

6 comments:

blackbird said...

Sometimes my parents would whisper the word cancer - so it wouldn't hear them and come...

bluemountainsmary said...

Cancer has come to my family - fortunately when dad died we were all grown up (young but adults nevertheless) - this book does sound like a treasure.

alice c said...

A wonderful post.

Thank you both for the information about the book and the mantra for life.

Anna said...

Hi Eleanor, so great to meet you! I'm thrilled to read your posts and will comr back to get to know you better. Fortunately my family have been spared when it comes to cancer (knock on wood...) but there has been times when I wished there was some place to turn to for guidance when the children had questions about losses, sorrow and just plain sense of injustice. Hope your friend's book makes it big.
You'll notice that I cannot be brief...
Your poem about getting comments is truly amazing.

Anna said...

Hi Eleanor, me being a novice, you need to be more precise about what I'm supposed to do in order to add the what-ever-you called-it thing to you so that something exciting will happen...?
Fool-proof shopping online, it ought to work with husbands too, right?

Duyvken said...

My parents use 'heaven forbid' in a similar context, I'd heard that hebrew phrase used but never knew what it meant, thanks for the explanation. And congrats to your friend on her book, that's a huge accomplishment!