Our Own Forever: a mother, a son and the unthinkable
(forthcoming from Dundurn Press, 2020)
Patti M. Hall’s life is pitched in an abyss of uncertainty when a golf-ball sized tumour is discovered in her son’s head and he is diagnosed with the infamous disease gigantism. Scrambling to access a handful of medical experts, doctors break the news that her boy could grow uncontrollably, and his life could be cut short without timely, aggressive treatment. Her attention shifts fully away from her relationships and friendships, her career and health and permanently, from herself. Hall’s new normal sees her step into a dozen new job descriptions including scrub nurse, medical researcher, primary caregiver and cheerleader while she struggles and fails to rebuild her life as a newly divorced woman because she is compelled to patrol the perimeter of her children’s lives. This is every parent’s story, because the fear of losing a child is the country of all loving parents who have tasted crisis even a little. Hall’s voice exudes wit, wisdom and humour, the hallmarks of people who must figure out how to handle the After, whatever their crisis.