Recently I was asked to participate in an initiative to spread Compassion, which is roundly defined as: A sympathetic response to the concerns of others that motivates a desire to help.



I can think of a hell of a lot of other things that get spread around on a daily basis that have the opposite effect, so I agreed.


#1000speak of bloggers, from around the world are participating on February 20.



I am honored to be among them…



Compassion would seem, on the surface, to be an easily enough emotion to conjure.

A child sees a wounded bird and wants to fix it’s wing.


A teenager consoles a friend who’s parents are divorcing.


A young adult provides a quiet ear for the broken heart of a peer.


A mother and father provide a safe place for their children to mend against the bruises of life.


The adult child of an aging parent must authorize Do Not Resuscitate medical orders.

Ummmmm. Not so much.

Not so Natural.

A situation that requires on odd response to Compassion, to committing to doing exactly what seems the opposite of ‘help’- Giving permission, orders even, to not go to extraordinary measures to save a loved ones life if the resulting ‘quality’ of life will be massively diminished.

And yet, there it is- the discussion between parent and child, the agreement, the commitment to signing directives that will allow your parent to die, when siblings are less sure, and grandchildren, with space ahead of them, don’t understand the finality of anything, when it is entirely possible that their life could be saved, but at what cost? What quality?

This is a kind of Compassion too.


  • Kathleen O'Donnell - Yes, it does. Been there with both of my parents. It’s a terrible necessity. One must summon all reserves of compassion to carry out an DNR. Bless your heart.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - Life is a bumpy road that’s for sure. Thanks for stopping by Kathleen. I appreciate it.ReplyCancel

  • Roshni - The ability to allow the other to choose what’s best for them and to support them is definitely compassionate!ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - It’s what’s on my mind recently. It’s what’s in my life recently. Oh boy.ReplyCancel

  • barb barton dlugosz - Hi Cher,
    I know how hard it is,but to respect one’s wishes is showing the compassion that they need and count on, so they don’t have to worry. I understand completely.
    xo barbyReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - We need to talk.ReplyCancel

      • Barb dlugosz - You know I am here for you, Liss and your mom ANYTIME! Just call! Love yaReplyCancel

  • Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain's Wife - As I get older, I have less and less compassion, and more and more cynicism. There are those who truly deserve our compassion and action to right the wrong, and that’s where I’m at. I don’t tolerate anymore those who merely talk the talk, we need to walk it, live it, change it.
    On another note, hope you’re doing great, I’m kind of lost without my old FB page, don’t know what’s going on!ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - What a sweet friend you are. I miss you tooo but I’m back. Stop back here on Monday. Then we’ll PM. Love you gal!ReplyCancel

  • Linda Roy - I do think it’s a form of compassion, absolutely. Helping that person go with dignity without prolonging their suffering. Not at all easy. But then, sometimes showing compassion doesn’t always come easy.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - You said a mouthful sista! But then again- you always do. XXOOOReplyCancel

  • Mari Collier - So glad to see you back. I’ve already had that last one with mine. They know what a horrible patient I am.ReplyCancel

  • Piper George - It’s a very difficult decision. I don’t even know if we have DNR in the UK. I focused on a similar theme – the ability to choose for yourself though, rather than having to make family choose for you. It’s a tough place to be. Great post – very thoughtful.ReplyCancel

  • Charlie - You must answer the question, “If this were you, and you wouldn’t get better, would you want to go through death just once, or many times?”

    We can bring people “back” repeatedly, almost indefinitely. The question is, bring them back to what? You cannot, you cannot change the final result. In the end, it is not what you want, but what must be. Don’t make it worse than it already is. It is very difficult to be a human being. You can not decide what happens, but you can help to decide how it happens. The amount of control you can exert is limited. I know, you and your mom are both control freaks, but this is bigger than both of you. I am crying while I write this, but you will both be ok. It is ok to die. We all do.ReplyCancel

    • Cheryl - Just about the best response I can imagine Charles. Thank you. XXOOReplyCancel

  • Liv BySurprise - Those are the conversations you need to have well before you need to know… #1000SpeakReplyCancel

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