Leaving Gracefully

No, I am not "leaving gracefully", like my title may suggest, but it is actually the name of a Taiwanese Movie (based off of a true story). It is about a family (consisting of a husband, wife and daughter) whose life changes when the mother/wife is diagnosed with Cerebral (Brain) Atrophy. Cerebral atrophy is where the brain cells deteriorate, leaving the person with the disease incapable of performing the daily actions that they were once able to do (such as pouring a glass of water or walking normally). Because there is no cure for it, the person eventually dies.

Leaving Gracefully was a wonderful and mind blowing account for what goes on when a person is diagnosed with Cerebral Atrophy, and in my opinion, was a good example of how situations like that should be handled in terms of coping. The prominent thing throughout the movie was that the husband refused to just allow the disease to take control of the rest of his wife's life. He made the most out of the time that they had left together, receiving many "He is truly a good husband" and "why aren't there any guys like this anymore?!" remarks from me. I think that their daughter showed how people would normally cope with a family member dying. At first she tried to avoid the situation, but as time passed, she started to treasure the moments that her mom had left.

And thanks to my years of annotating in English class (Thanks, Mrs. Burns!), I was able to identify criticism/ social commentary regarding the issue. I don't think it was hard to point out, but if you do watch the movie and still don't recognize it, there is one scene where a therapist is telling the husband that because not many people suffer from Cerebral Atrophy, some people are just not willing to fund for research on curing the disease. I think that this movie really gets the point across that this, and other rare diseases for that matter, should be tended to just as much as more infamous ones such as cancer and HIV/AIDS (no offense to people who have or know someone with these diseases) because everyone deserves a fighting chance to live.

I really do encourage anyone who reads this to go watch the movie. It came out in 2011 I believe, so it isn't that old. It is really worth your time to do so. It certainly was for me.