Sunday, May 17, 2009

Opinion: Farrah's Story

Ron and I watched Farrah's Story on Friday night. In my opinion, it was very well-done and touched on a lot of facts. Although it skimmed over a few things, such as the cost of drugs and the availability of them in the US, it really gave a broad look at living with, and fighting, the ravages of cancer.

I wish it had said "how" people get this type of cancer, what to look for, what kind of screening process is it, etc. Is it a by-product of smoking or some other lifestyle that is less than healthy? Why is there so little discussion and research done on this type of cancer? What kinds of treatments are beneficial and at what stage in the disease are they done?

Sure, Farrah had the money to make the trips to Germany. I don't begrudge that at all. If she could afford it, why not do it. It's just a shame that she HAD to travel to Germany to receive this care. Her obvious struggle with the nausea, vomiting, fatigue, and over-all health were very sad to watch, but not something that I think was morbid or disgusting. Cancer is something that will touch so many lives that any publicity it gets that will generate more research and funding should be applauded, and not ridiculed.

I applaud the fact that Farrah went after the medical personnel who so callously were selling private information to tabloids. Tabloids are shameless about creating hype where there should be none and intruding into the lives of others. The public has helped to create this mad frenzy of “gotta have it” for more information, but the tabloids feed into it. If both sides were to back off, then maybe there would be room for more truthful reporting.

I am happy to see that Ryan O’Neal is by her side and I think that he truly loves her. Yes, he’s an actor and would be good at showing emotions that are not genuine, but I don’t think that anyone who lives with a cancer patient can fake those emotions. No matter how indifferent someone thinks they may be, you can’t watch someone else’s suffering and remain immune.

There is some talk about this presentation not being what Farrah had in mind. That’s too bad, but we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that it still brought a lot of information out – just not enough in some areas. I was sad to see that the jailer felt he needed to leave Redmond in ankle cuffs for what will probably be his last visit with his mother. The fact that Farrah’s face was not shown towards the end of the show indicates just how sick she is right now.

One of the comments that Farrah made during the show was that while she knows everyone has got to die, she does not want to die from this disease and she could surely use a miracle. Sadly, it looks as if her miracle is not happening but maybe her miracle was in the extra time that she was given. Maybe her miracle was being able to produce this documentary for others to learn from.

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