The Mother

A doctor is talking to a mother.


(Doctor) “Where most children grow stronger as they get older, your son is going to get weaker. He’ll lose the ability to move. He’ll lose the ability to breathe on his own. And one day, he’ll catch an infection that will spread into his respiratory system, giving him severe pneumonia . . .”

She held up her hand to stop him.  “You’re saying he is going to die?”

He nodded. “There are three types of SMA. Caught this early, your son almost certainly has Type I. Most children with Type I die of pneumonia before the age of two.” He paused. “I’m sorry.”

What  happened to the child? Did he die after two years due to pneumonia ?

He caught pneumonia 16 times in 16 years. But he never died. He said his mother never let it happen.

According to him:

She orchestrated a team of more than a dozen doctors. She slept in a chair beside me in the hospital, sometimes for as many as 30 days in a row. She pounded my chest and back every two hours to loosen the mucus, covering my chest and back with bruises.

Today, at 27 years old, I’m one of the oldest people in the world with my type of SMA, and people tell me it’s a miracle. And I agree, it is. But the miracle isn’t just me. It’s a mother who fought like only a mother can to keep me alive.

His mother fought school board for two years to get his child admitted in the school. Of course, she won. When her child was unable to pick up pencil to do his homework, still his mother refused to be cowed down and she arranged for honors students at local colleges to help his son. His son too never disappointed her and he graduated at the age of 16, not only near the top of his class, but with college credit.

What happened when the son grew up? He too imbibed the fighting traits from his mother. People used to dismiss him as another disabled person. But he was determined to not rise to people expectations of being a failure.


They (people) don’t proactively hold you back, no, but they don’t expect you to succeed either. I’ve spent my entire life fighting against the weight of those expectations.

Like when university professors were flabbergasted when, on the first day, I asked my attendant to raise his hand, so I could answer the question that no one else could.

Or the vaguely constipated look on the face of a venture capitalist when I asked for $500,000 of startup capital for my first software company.

Or the disbelieving stares of people at a real estate conference when I gave a talk about buying million-dollar homes without even being able to get up the stairs to see the inside of them.

What egged on the child to succeed?

How could I possibly look my mother and father and all of the others who have sacrificed so much for me in the eye and tell them, “I can’t?” I couldn’t bear it. The shame of dishonoring their sacrifice by giving up would poison my soul.

Original Article: On Dying, Mothers, and Fighting for Your Ideas


A Love Story and $ 29 Million!

Love story

We love and care deeply for each other but due to irreconcilable differences we are getting divorced!!! The publicists of celebrity couples often reiterates this sentence to media, making a mockery of couples “love” and “deep care” for each other. Presently when relationships are breaking at slightest pretexts, I come across this story and still wondering what love is all about!

It is a story of plain injustice. FBI kept mum all the time in the court to protect its informant. This led to the conviction of four men for a murder they didn’t commit. Two of them died in jail and two are out of jail after spending 30 precious years of their lives behind the bars! One of them is Joseph Salvati who is 75 years old now. His lawyer fought his case for three decades without charging a penny and grew old with his client.

When I read this story what hit me hard is this fellow has something which the coolest, richest, sexiest hunks surviving in this world can’t have; the love, affection and care of Marie Salvati, his wife of 53 years! Was Jeseph a catch? Read for yourself:

A high school graduate with no trade skills, Joseph Salvati put in ten-hour days, six days a week, working three jobs to support his family. “It was casual labour,” he says. “You got what you could. I’d run down to the pier and help unload the fish. Lumpin’, it was called. It was dog’s work. But you could make US$60 a week. I unloaded trucks in the meat market. I worked as a doorman. The hours were late, but US$40 in tips was US$40.”

For the past 30 years Joseph was in the prison when Marie Salvati unflinchingly took care of their four children. She had faced many hardships. She couldn’t go for a full time job because her children were small. Marie recalled that she barely managed to put food on the table earlier. She had joined a charity organization at a lower rank and later on rose to the position of Director. She along with her children never failed to pay a weekly visit on Saturday to Joseph. And Joseph? He never failed to send a weekly greeting card to his family which he purchased from his 15-cents-a-day prison wages. Each card was placed on the top of the television until the next arrived. Marie stored her precious collection in shoe boxes, tied with red ribbon. What a way to keep your romance alive! And what a way to keep in touch with children!

Did they think of separating or divorcing each other during those times? Yes! Joseph once suggested Marie to divorce him and “move ahead” in life. He promised that he would not contest it. What his wife said was not something flowery and romantic but simple, plain truth. “Are you crazy?” Marie responded. “I took a vow for better or worse. We love each other.”
The court has awarded him $ 29 million in compensation. Salvati, now 75, knows he may not live long enough to see a penny of the award. But today Joseph is a free man. He is spending time with his wife, children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. He loves the feeling that he can walk anywhere he wants.




I thought these things existed in stories only. Amrit sent me this link:

Four months into her pregnancy, Lorraine Allard was devastated to learn she was in the advanced stages of cancer.

Doctors advised her to have an abortion and start chemotherapy straight away.

Instead, with steadfast courage, she insisted on waiting long enough to give her unborn son a chance to survive, telling her husband Martyn: “If I am going to die, my baby is going to live.”

A caesarean delivery was scheduled at 26 weeks, but Mrs Allard went into premature labour a week before and Liam was born on November 18.

She then started chemotherapy, but died on January 18 – having left her bed a handful of times to cuddle her son beside his incubator.

“Lorraine was positive all the way through – she had strength for both of us,” Mr Allard said yesterday.

“Towards the end we knew things weren’t going well, but she was overjoyed that she had given life to Liam.”

What the husband says about her final moments:

“On the day Lorraine died, she hadn’t eaten for two weeks and couldn’t drink.

“I laid beside her and she was gripping my hand quite tight.

“We were like that for about half an hour. I could feel against my chest that her heart was slowing down. She just slipped away after that. It was very peaceful.

Did the mother want to be known as a sacrificing martyr ?

“When Liam is old enough, I won’t tell him that Lorraine gave her life for him, but I will say she made sure he had a good chance of life.

“She told me she didn’t want him to feel bad about it.”
Its as simple as that!


A Husband and a Wife


All the great love stories of the world are of unmarried couples. If they were married their love stories might not have been that great. In modern times, Our busy schedule rarely permits us to nurture “relationships.” But still from time to time we come across people who have more love for each other than legendary couple like Romeo & Juliet. They might not get into history books but nevertheless their love transcends any epic or time.

Here is a wife who faithfully took care of her husband for not one, two, three, four or five but nineteen years. Gertruda’s country, Poland, changed from communist dictatorship to democracy, the economy changed from socialist to capitalist, but this woman’s faith remained unchanged.

For 19 years she spoonfed her husband Grzebska and kept him moving sideways every hour to prevent bedsores. Grzebska sustained serious head injuries in an accident and slipped into coma in 1988. Doctors were not optimistic about his recovery. But Grzebska’s wife, Gertruda had never given up on him. She brought him home and took care of him religiously. And one fine day Grzebska has woken up from his 19-year-old slumber. What fascinates him most is cell phones!!! What he says about the globalized world:

“‘When I went into a coma there was only tea and vinegar in the shops, meat was rationed and huge petrol queues were everywhere,’ he told the Polish news channel TVN24.

‘Now I see people on the streets with cell phones and there are so many goods in the shops it makes my head spin. What amazes me is all these people who walk around with their mobile phones and never stop moaning – I’ve got nothing to complain about.'”

More Links:

Living Corpse’ Wakes After 19-Year Coma
Where are the food queues, asks Polish man after 19-year coma
Man Sees Changed World, Coming Out Of Coma After 19 Years