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Laughter is a tranquilizer with no side effects.
-Arnold Glasow

From "I'd Rather Do Chemo than Clean Out the Garage" by Fran Di Giacomo:

Call me crazy (and most people do), but there really are a lot of benefits to the chemo lifestyle. As a career member of the Chemo Club, I have learned many creative ways to negotiate the roadblocks and rough waters of the chemo lifestyle. Let's examine the upside to all of this!

The Great Gift Caper: You may declare me a shameless hussy and accuse me of abusing my friends, but not to worry. I love my friends and do everything I can to take care of them.

You see, I've always been an independent person and not necessarily the touchy-feely type. But when my ship went down, I was amazed at how many people came to my rescue. At one point, I remarked to a friend that everyone should get hit by a truck just once to see how many people cared. Friends assigned themselves the task of bringing food to my family on a regular basis. Of course I thanked them profusely. But when the food had filled the freezer to overflowing and was beginning to pile up under the bushes behind my house, the meals-on-wheels people were soon stalking my house for leftovers. Still the food kept coming. Even now after five years, I come home and find goodies on my doorstep. Last Christmas there was a mountain of presents at my door. It was embarrassing. Imagine what that last person thought as they left their package on top of the pile.

Actually, I know what they thought: Fran is milking this for all it's worth. Fran has learned the art of creative whining-just enough to keep the care packages coming but not enough to drive people away.

Embarrassing, but true. One friend in particular brings me gifts constantly. Wonderful things. Little, thoughtful things. Frivolous things I would never buy for myself: lotions and potions for my body, snugly blankets, and an endless supply of chocolates. Oh, how I do love chocolate! (Did you hear about the guy who asked the genie to make him irresistible to women and the genie "zapped" him into a box of chocolates?) This friend also brings my other vital necessity: laughs. She has provided me with a lifetime supply of comedy tapes and funny jokes for "horizontal" days.

She still asks what she can do to brighten my day. I was thinking of putting in a request for a new clothes dryer or dishwasher. Now that would really bolster my spirits! Then next (in a pitiful rasping voice), I could drop a "hint" that the disposal in my kitchen quit working years ago. And well you know how it is with chemo and all...

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