Monday, March 10, 2014


The cancer journey is a hard one. (Yes, it's a platitude, but it's no less true.) It strips away everything it can take.

It strips away the future.
It strips away strength.
It strips away faith.

I have been struggling to retain faith in something, hope in something, as Kevin walks this hard path. I keep coming back to physics.

When I was younger I loved reading popular science books, and especially books about physics. I retained some of it and find that now it gives me hope. If my interpretations are wrong please keep it to yourself, let me find comfort where I may.

  • The butterfly effect. Tiny actions may have incalculable results. Leading to -
  • The observer effect. We change things by observing them. We may even change things by thinking about them. The mere fact that hundreds if not thousands of people are thinking about and praying for Kevin may still have an unexpected, amazing effect. Even if it doesn't, all of that good energy will change those who are holding him in their hearts and ensure that he is always here in some fashion or another. Which brings me to another other law of physics I love.
  • Energy can be neither created nor destroyed, it can only be converted into another form. All of the energy that went into making the stars, the earth, each and every one of us, is still present. The energy that existed in the forms of those long dead is still here. Every bit. So when we lose someone their energy still exists, just in a different form. Maybe they are now part of an ocean wave or a bit of light headed off to explore new worlds. But their basic components, at the most basic level, still exist.
More than these, I remember the law of physics I learned when I was a young teen, from those masters Lennon and McCartney. This one gives me the most hope of all.
  • And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.  Which means, no matter what, Kevin is here now in a far greater form than his body and will always be here. You will remain, too. And me. The love is not lost or destroyed, it can only grow. The more we love, the more we are.
And that's really all I need to remember, to help me retain the future, strength and faith.

(c)2014 Laura S. Packer

p.s. Yes, I have read the wonderful NPR column by Aaron Freeman. I found it after I started pondering physics. If you haven't read it, you should. Creative Commons License


  1. The Blue Butterfly effect. Yes.

    I'm Dan, and I approve the physics in this message.

  2. Laura, you are absolutely wonderful in the depth of your expressiveness. You are absolutely wonderful, period. I'll hang on to the future, strength and faith with you, and I know we'll have company in that. Thank you, dear one, for showing the way. Continue to find comfort where you may.

  3. Strength. I never considered its importance in this context but that is what keeps us going through the hard times. That inner strength that comes from what source? Love, that wellspring that keeps us going.

  4. Hi,
    My name is Simon and I also approve the physics in the message.
    Love, love, love.


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