Parents-to-Be Have More Choices Than Ever, But We Can’t Choose Our Way Out of Pain

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Jennifer Gilmore’s story is enough to scare anyone away from open adoption. (It also provides the best supporting evidence ever for my contention that “Why don’t you just adopt?” might be one of the stupidest questions known to humankind.) After years of fertility treatments , Gilmore and her husband settled on an open domestic adoption. [Read More...]

Why I Don’t Call Myself a “Cancer Survivor” (& Why We Should All Think Twice Before Donning a Pink Ribbon)

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Three autumns ago, I walked into a radiologist’s office after a follow-up mammogram. He pointed to my films on a computer screen, and before he spoke, I knew I had cancer. I saw the trouble clearly—a cluster of opaque white dots in the upper portion of my right breast. My cancer, a type called ductal [Read More...]

[Me & My Naturopath] On Being Unfixable in a World Obsessed with Fixing

Even this standard yoga position? Ouch. I manage with blankets and blocks to get into something resembling this position. Sometimes.

A few weeks ago, I took a detour from my naturopathy focus to go see my orthopedist. My right knee (which I still thought of as my “good” knee, because unlike the other knee, it has never needed surgery) had become very painful, and I wanted to see if there was an acute injury that [Read More...]

Meet David, as He Blogs His Way Through Alzheimer’s

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At the Potter’s House Church in Washington, D.C. (part of the former Church of the Saviour, founded by the late Gordon Cosby and his wife Mary), I worshipped with a physician named David Hilfiker. David and I were not particularly close. I was intimidated by his intellect. He once gave a sermon series parsing Rene [Read More...]

Last Night at Yoga

My teacher was showing us some really wild things she has learned to do with her abdominal muscles. She blows out all her breath, pulls her abs back toward her spine, then is able to release and contract individual muscles so that a wave ripples back and forth across her belly. It’s wild to watch. [Read More...]

[Me & My Naturopath] Why I’m a Hopeful Skeptic

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Fed up with my increasing impairment due to chronic pain, I went to see a naturopath last week. I left her office with plans and recommendations for a five-pronged approach to lessening my pain, and increasing my strength and function: 1. Weekly acupuncture 2. Regular yoga practice 3. An anti-inflammatory diet (such as this one). [Read More...]

Taboo Stories About Disability: What We’re Not Allowed to Say

Last week’s New York Times featured a story about Joshua Miele, who at the age of four in 1973, answered the door of his Brooklyn home to a man he recognized as a neighbor. The man, for no reason other than his disordered thinking due to mental illness, threw acid into the boy’s face. A [Read More...]

When Conflicting Stories Are Both True: Illness, Identity, and the Tales We Tell of Living with Disability

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In his vast and gripping book, Far from the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity, journalist Andrew Solomon discusses the two narratives that we use when we talk about life with disability in general, and/or with particular conditions, such as dwarfism, deafness, Down syndrome, autism, or my own genetic disorder, osteogenesis imperfecta (OI). [Read More...]


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