Thursday, October 23, 2008

Consequential Stories.

I am so glad I attended the Swedish Medical Center's Women's Wellness Luncheon Benefit yesterday. In addition to an inspiring luncheon program, I wandered through a wellness fair with booths and displays related to women’s health. The funds raised benefit Swedish's patient assistance program. I've said many times that cancer does not discriminate, and the stories we heard yesterday from women helped by the fund truly run the gamut. The smallest amount awarded is $50 and the top amount something like $2,000. What a difference a few dollars have made in the lives of so many.

The two speakers I found most compelling both have beat back cancer more than once. C.J. Taylor, the keynote speaker and a healthcare professional, has had both breast and ovarian cancer and more than once in each case. She is a remarkable woman, one of the pioneers for early detection and testing in the Northwest. The other speaker who closed the event is my own Martha Harris, the flower lady par excellance. She moved her store from University Village some years ago, to Madison Park, where I still trek several times a year to buy one-of-a-kind items for the garden and to ask for a bouquet of their design in the Kosta Boda vase that James and Leroy got me years ago. The most I ever specify -- and those who know me know how much a gesture of trust this is from me -- are colors for the bouquet. Not in all those years have I known that Martha too is a survivor with a gleaming sense of humor.

For those looking for a quiet new direction to keep them centered during the winter months, I recommend a CD that was a luncheon giveaway. It is by Carolyn McManus, and is called "Loving Kindness Meditation & Forgiveness Meditation," available on Amazon. I listened to it this morning, and have since ordered another 3-CD set on Amazon featuring other mediations she has produced as part of a wellness series.

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