Comment: Fonta's Message to Us, as sent to me in emails this afternoon:

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Fonta's Message to Us, as sent to me in emails this afternoon:

For Whom the Bell Tolls tolls for thee.

(The last extraordinary three days...insights gleaned, love and appreciation felt, people touched, reasons to celebrate!)

First, a heartfelt thank you to a few moderators who got past the confusion of freedom of speech and right and wrong and immediately made a few alterations in this thread which enabled me to send it to family and friends. Many of these people never would have been introduced to the DP and yet, their introduction was to the very best of the DP... its heart. The repercussions of this one gesture of compassion are widespread. None of us will ever know all of the people who received your messages and the impact it had on them but, one of them, my grown daughter, called me crying after reading your messages and said to me, “Mama, you are so loved!” There is no way I can express what your messages meant to me or to her.

On Monday, I went in for a contrastive MRI scanning for brain cancer. What I had been told (or led to believe) was that CT scans and a PET scan indicated that I had brain cancer (metastasized from the lung cancer) and the reason for the MRI was to learn just how extensive it was. Paralysis, early dementia, short and long term memory loss were thrown out to me as potential catastrophes to be averted. My worst fear at that point was that I might not be given the opportunity to die with dignity and grace... that I would not die as “me.” I then took all the good from this thread and tried to eliminate a few posts from my mind, still wishing I could send it to family.

I got a miracle! It was the first of several miracles, when the thread was edited keeping that which was full of beauty, truth and goodness. Retaining not only the sincere expressions of compassion, but also many indications of just how many of us have faced the death of a loved one, confusion over treatments and the things doctors say as they “practice” their art, not science. Taking all that with me, I had the MRI and prayed for strength to handle the outcome.

After some comments were deleted, this thread was sent to many people. I was propelled into a different state of mind and arrived at the doctor’s office the next day on the wings of angels. It was the day of my tenth and last day of radiation on the femur (that pain is now gone) and the day I would learn how far the brain cancer had progressed. I was greeted at the check-in desk with, “The doctor does not need to meet with you. The MRI came back completely normal. You do not have brain cancer.” This was the LAST thing I expected to hear, my friends.

Then, after the last treatment, the nurses and technicians who have been with me throughout all of these treatments asked me if I wanted to “ring the bell” celebrating my last treatment and the clear MRI. When I asked, “What bell?” they replied, “Why the bell on the wall that you have walked right by every day as you came in for treatments.” I never saw a bell, but sure enough it was right there on the wall. It looked like a Liberty Bell mounted on the wall with a draw string to toll and a plaque that said “Celebrate.” Yes, I rang it and the nurses and technicians all clapped. I felt pure joy! I celebrated life for that moment and raised my cyber glass in a toast with all of you on the DP who wrote to me... all who are also going through similar situations (including Michael and his sister-in-law), the families drawn into the reality of this part of life, and yes, that part of the medical community who try their best to, if not heal, reduce pain and suffering.

I traveled back home in a state of euphoria and read even more wonderful messages posted here before being thrown into one of those magical mystery tours that many of us on the DP live for. They are so exciting and often result in knowledge we might not otherwise have ever had. Yes, after contemplating the possible power of prayer of multiple hearts uniting in all their diversity because they effect change on another dimension... after all that, I was all over the internet driven by “For Whom the Bell Tolls.” I had blanked on who wrote it and it began and how it ended. About that time my daughter, who will be coming here on the 13th, asked if she could bring “the bell”. I had also blanked on a little bell shaped like an angel that sat on my mother’s bed stand while I was her caregiver when she was dying of cancer. She would ring it when the pain became too great and I was able to give her medication to reduce the pain. You see, my little girl who cannot leave her family and be here every moment, wanted to be part of that mother/daughter cycle. She wanted me to ring that bell and for her to be able, if only for a short period of time, to take the pain away. I said, "Sure, bring the bell."

Then, I moved on to the internet. Of course, John Donne wrote it and began with “no man is an island.” (My recollection may be incorrect; however, I seem to remember Michael once quoting Donne in a post.) Donne ended with...”For whom does the bell toll? tolls for thee." I say that to every one of you. I rang the bell for a lot of reasons but, perhaps most importantly, for mankind. For that which makes us unique... for what makes us human. For the reason that it is all going to be alright.

It is my will that God’s will be done... that my children, grandchildren and friends get some wisdom from this journey with me, and that if there is any possibility that I could deliver even one message to another... if I could serve and be used in that manner, I would be honored and would have no need to know to whom what messages were delivered.

I hope to respond briefly to many of the personal posts and then this thread can go into the archives. There is very important information being communicated on this site. There is a lot of support in many areas as we reach to understand just why many of us are so touched by those bubbles of unity in diversity that continuously surface. Today I am impressed by the bedrock from which many of our thoughts, research, and sharing come. We reach for a perfect system of governance, clarification of our history, getting past the anger and on toward correction. We do that not because we want to be right or from self-concern. We do that because there is always hope... because there is power in unity... because we care about each other... we care about human suffering all over the world... because we care about our great grandchildren. That bedrock is the very heart and soul of the DP. It is why it is so special. And, that is why along with John Donne, I say, "For whom does the bell toll? It tolls for thee. "


“It is the food which you furnish to your mind that determines the whole character of your life.”
―Emmet Fox