Now this is a subject close to my heart. I spent 20 years as an Oncology Certified RN working out there with patients and families. Treating, advising, educating, coordinating and advocating through the course of therapy.
Hard work for everyone concerned. Patients would ask us how we could do it everyday and I and all the staff at the clinic would reply words to this effect: "...because you give us hope, because we want to walk this road as well as you are walking it."
I loved being an Oncology RN because after patients get a diagnosis of cancer all the bullshit falls away. You deal with people on a full, rich level--the laughs are incredible. Living life on the edge is such a rush.
Randy Pausch was a guy who took advantage of living on the edge. He did all the things he wanted to do. He believed--and you should believe too--that cheating the reaper is not living longer but living deeper and loving and teaching and laughing and crying a little and making sure your bills are paid and your family is cared for.
Don't deny death--it is out there for everyone of us. Work with it, use it, dance with it--all the people you love are watching you and are going to have to do this dying thing too. Teach them well.
Teach them like Randy did and continues to do through his book and lectures.