The Gloria! update Print
Written by Sherry   
Friday, 27 July 2007 10:06
I wanted to keep abreast of developments re 11 year old cancer patient Gloria Strauss that I wrote about here.

According to the Seattle Times reporter who is doing a series on Gloria and her devoutly Catholic family:

Gloria is doing even better now. For the fifth straight day, she was on her feet today. Of course, the spirits of her parents are soaring.

They're not fooling themselves. They know Gloria is still in a lot of pain, but they're appreciating this positive sign. On Sunday, Gloria went to Mass and wowed the congregation, Doug reports.

I'm thrilled for the family. It needed this. Doug called me early this morning and sounded more excited than I've ever heard him. He told me I have a gift for this type of storytelling, which meant more to me than I could express to him.

I've worried so much about misrepresenting this story. I've never focused more on ensuring a proper tone than I have while writing this series. I'm finding that the stories are reaching people on many levels.

People who don't have similar religious beliefs have been e-mailing to tell me that they're considering this a story about love. I'm glad they can take that from the series. There's definitely a lot of love in the Strauss family.

I had one reader -- who can't stand the suffering -- send an e-mail calling us "cruel" and "voyeuristic vultures" and someone who is "pimping tragedy" today. It was upsetting, but there were 200 other e-mails from people who got the message.

We're all entitled to our opinions, and his disgust came from not wanting to see a child hurting. So I don't want to argue with the guy or condemn him for disagreeing with the series. I think I've spent plenty of time in this space talking about my motivations and the Strausses' motivations for doing this story, so I'm not going to repeat myself again.

In the series, I have presented what the Strausses believe and how it moves through every fiber of lives. I have done so without judging them and without lionizing them. So I'm not going to judge or ridicule a cynic.

This story is about believing, or having faith. You can believe what you want. But are you strong enough to put yourself on the line for it?

The Strausses are. That's their charm. That's their burden. That's their life.

And right now, life is good. Gloria is active. One prayer has been answered.