radio-induced thoughts

We’ve been travelling. I’ve been listening to a lot of radio and podcasts. Often, the stories i hear bring me to think about different aspects of grief. Sometimes, they allow me to explore new facets of grief, to better understand the processes i am going through. So here are a few recent radio-induced thoughts.

Radiolab, a show i enjoy despite some of its problematic aspects (i.e. it’s is very white/western- and male-centered) tackled a complicated topic this week. Its team attempted to “put a price on the priceless”, including human life. In a conversation about what we collectively should spend on keeping people alive with the help of high-end drugs, they ask what is a month of human life is worth. How much is it ok to spend to extend someone’s life for a year? They discuss these questions with different specialists but also ask people on the street “what is a year of life worth?” Most people took a lot of time to answer and asked many questions to better understand the context of this question, and the quality of life they would benefit from. 5 000$, 10 000$, 10M$… 7$. As the reporter said, the answers were « all over the place ».

I stuck me as odd that the reporter asked people to put a value on a year of their own life, and even more so that some people asked whether they would have to reimburse what they would need to borrow. I would have been curious to hear how much people would estimate a year of their loved ones’ life is worth. What answer would you get if you asked parents to answer what their child life is worth? What if you asked parents who have lost a child?

Or would it be an entirely pointless and painful question?

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birth and memories

I have always enjoyed writing. Throughout my school years, my birthday very often fell on the same day as the final writing exam. I guess not everyone would have been pleased with this pattern but I didn’t mind. I enjoyed it, for the most part, and enjoyed the feeling that came with the end of the school year, the air finally warming up, the upcoming weeks of freedom. I didn’t mind writing assignments for school, and then, once I entered university, I truly enjoyed writing papers and developing my ideas and my grasp on the language – whether it be in english of french. Over the past four years, as I have been working for a neighborhood community organisation, I have appreciated learning how to shape language to reach people of different walks of life.

I had never written on a regular basis on my own terms, but in the past few months, writing has been an amazing outlet to express my conflicted feelings. Through this blog and different forums, I have allowed myself the space to reflect on my life as Paul’s mother, on his life, on what to make of these months of learning how to live without him. I have also been in contact with a few persons I have “met” through their blogs. These few epistolary relationships have been so precious. The level of connection that can form across people who share significant experiences is truly amazing and leads to beautiful conversations. Lire la suite