I have to admit that when Elizabeth and John Edwards announced the recurrence, with mets to the bone, of her breast cancer, I was one who said, why doesn't he just drop out? I railed that they had young children and should be focused on them. Not campaigning.
But who am I to judge? I think it was easy for me to sit in the comfort of my own home and think I knew what was best for her and her family. I know for a fact that my mom does not want to be treated like an invalid before she must. And, she is determined to have as full a life as she can while she still can. I imagine Elizabeth thought much the same. Back when she still thought her husband was an honorable man, even if she did have questions, I guess she thought he would have been what was best for our country. And, perhaps, she thought getting him elected could be her legacy.
I was so sad when I heard about her death yesterday. It hit me much harder than I ever would have expected. When I think about her children, I break down.
There are lessons to be learned in how Elizabeth handled her disease. She treated each day as a gift. I understand that she was writing a letter of life lessons to her children during these past three years. Good for her. I am certain her children will treasure it.
Dignity. Courage. Grace. All under the ever watchful eye and glare of the media. We can all learn from that.
Rest in peace, Elizabeth.