A request to our readers

I’m being circumspect here, but I wanted to ask a favor.
The mother of one of your faithful SashaCastel correspondents is having surgery in an hour, to remove (hopefully) a brain tumor. Obviously, surgery like this is never a sure thing. So, if you’re the praying type, put your hands together and say a few kind words to the deity/higher power of your choice. If you’re not the praying type, then just send good vibes to someone who needs them, badly.
UPDATE: Mrs. Wickstein is doing okay! According to Scott, she’s groggy but awake, optimistic and asking for a vodka. Like mother like son;)



  1. Mithras

    Oh, man, I hope it goes well, whoever it is. I’m not the praying type, but hoping can’t hurt, I guess.
    I just found out on Friday my dad has three brain tumors – inoperable. They give him a few months to live.

  2. Pejmanesque


    My thoughts and prayers go to the mother and family of one of Sasha Castel’s co-bloggers as she undergoes serious surgery. Here’s hoping for a swift and successful recovery….

  3. Mithras

    Thanks, Sasha. I have never had anyone close to me die, so I don’t know how this will go. I guess that’s always the case. Thanks again.

  4. Scott Wickstein

    It’s never easy Mithras.
    Having already seen one parent laid to rest, I was frantic that I might lose the other. I haven’t felt like writing about it at all, but thanks Helena for the post. It was touching to read it.
    The operation took six hours, but the early indications are that it has been a success. Thanks to everyone for their thoughts, prayers and good wishes. There’s still some tough times ahead for Mum with radiotherapy starting next week, but there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.

  5. Al Maviva

    We have had a few knock-down, drag-out debates in this forum, but that stuff is just talk. When it comes down to it, all of us who buy into the idea of civilization form part of the great chain of being, or in slightly more modern terms, part of an island, and as Donne put it, I am the lesser for your loss.
    I don’t know what you are going through because everybody’s situation is unique. However, I did lose my father to chronic illness several years ago. I fortunately had some time to spend with him before he died. We cleared out all the old account balances, if you know what I mean, and spent a lot of time just being together, and it made the loss easier to bear knowing that there weren’t slights or insults left without apology; and knowing that he died knowing that I really loved & respected him. A good number of my friends have died in the last decade or so – drugs, military duty, general stupidity and disease have claimed them – and the only real regrets I have about my behavior is not having the chance to tell some of them what they meant to me, and the positive effects they had on my life. In the end, we don’t have much except love and respect and our life’s body of work; and for most of us that body of work is swept away by the next person to squat in our cubicle. So you probably know what I focused on when I had the chance to do so, with my father. That worked for me; your mileage may vary.
    As for you, and your family, you’ll be in my prayers, such as they are.

  6. Scott Wickstein

    I would probably reiterate what Al Maviva said. I was lucky enough to sort things out with my father before he passed away. The other thing is to just rememeber to live in the here and now- don’t let the shadow of the future overwhelm you. It’s easy to be calendar focused in this situation and forget to live for the moment, especially when you are with your Dad.
    Best wishes Mithras.

  7. Mithras

    Thanks, Al and Scott. I really appreciate your good wishes.
    My dad smoked a pack a day of Marlboro reds from age 10 until age 65, so he’s not really surprised at being in this situation. He lived the way he wanted to, and he’s not one to second-guess or have regrets. We were watching football yesterday and one of my brothers was there, freaking out, downloading crap about “holistic cancer cures.” Like, if you eat half a ton of grapefruit and then chant, the tumors will vanish. My dad says to him something like, “I was lucky to have been born in America, at the time I was. I could have been born in Africa or someplace and died of starvation when I was 7. So, I’d say I’ve been pretty lucky. Now, move, you’re blocking the TV.” Pretty cool.
    He’s got three metastatic lesions originating from lung cancer. He’ll do radiotherapy and then we’ll see.
    Scott, how’s your mom doing? Any complications? When is she going to leave the hospital?

  8. Scott Wickstein

    No regrets is a good way to be. I like your Dad’s attitude.
    Mum’s coming home tomorrow! Lots of radiotherapy stuff still to come but she can come home and just chill out for a while. She’s eating well and hopefully put on some weight (only 48kg at the moment) so I’m a very happy boy.