Alex: The Life of a Child

Alex: The Life of a Child

While reading "Alex: The Life of a Child" I

learned a lot about people. I learned a lot about how

different people deal with tragedy and death. Ths book is

the story of a young girl named Alexandra Defor. Alex was

diagnosed with cystic fibrosis when she was an inant.

I learned a lot about CF. Cystic fibrosis harms the

lungs, the pancreas, in males their it damages their

reproductive system, so they can never have children. CF

is a progressive disease. When both the child's mother and

father have genes infected with CF in their body. When the

parents have a baby there is a one in three chance that the

baby will have the disease. CF is fatal and very

painful and hard on the patient and his or her family and

friends. Cystic Fibrosis can easily take over the victims

life. It seemed that Alex was in control of her illness. She

needed to receive painful physical treatment twice a day,

and a variety of medications. They never really seemed to

help Alex's condition, and Alex and her parents questioned

the continuation of their use.

Alex was a very mature child. Most people perceived

Alex as a young adult. She dealt with her problems and her

disease, as well as she possibly could have. People

(parents, friends, doctors and just about everyone that knew

Alex) could not believe how well Alex managed to cope, and

how well she accepted her extremely bad luck. She lived with

reality with greater ease than her parents. Her only fear

was that when she would die her family: mother, father, and

brother, would not be able to continue because they would be

to depressed and in so much pain from her loss. That shows

that dispite of her misery, she was concerned for others.

This shows her unselfishness, sensitivity, and

thoughtfulness towards other people.

Alex had many wishes, but one main one. Her biggest

wish was that a cure would be found for CF

before she died. Her wish was denied. Alex never used her

disease to make people like her. Every one liked Alex. Alex

always smiled and used every bit of her time that she had in

a positive and constructive way. She always enjoyed herself

(except while she suffered pain from her therapy). Even when

she was in the hospital she made the best of what she had.

Alex dealt with the fact that she would die extremely well.

She never questioned why she was ill, and not her brother.

She lived with her condition with ease. She understood

everything about her illness.

I learned a lot about how people deal with death, and

how people deal with loss of unbelievably special and close

child. Alex's parents wanted to give Alex a whole life's

worth of living in the mere eight years that

she lived. Alex's parents tried to fulfill all of her

wishes, while she was alive and after she had died. One of

Alex's prayers which she recited every night, was to bring

children from poor countries to the USA. After

Alex died her parent's knew they could not have another

child nor did they want to replace Alex. They adopted a baby

girl from a deprived country.

For a child who's second home and room was in the

hospital she was a very happy and delightful child. She

seemed to always smile. Her cheerfulness and smiles are what

most of her classmates remembered Alex by. Alex never really

felt sorry for herself. In some occasions like one of the last times

she was in the hospital she did have sympathy for herself. Alex

wanted to be home in time for the holidays, since she knew this

would be her last Christmas alive. She was not able to leave the

hospital as early as she would have liked because her lung kept

collapsing, (but she did make the holidays). Right after the last

time her lung had collapsed, Alex was talking with her father, and

that was when she asked him-"Why does God hate me?".

That was one of the only times that Alex felt sorry and bad for

herself, and questioned why it was her, why God chose her

and not some other child to have her terrible disease and her

harsh pain.

This story of Alex has made me think about many aspects

of life that we face each and every day like: life, death,

pain, joy, dealing with loss. I hope that other people

as much about people as I did from this book.

I realized by reading this touching tribute of a

father, to his late daughter that you should make the best

of what you have, especially when you know that you are

going to die in a very short time.

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