04 Extensive Reading Questions for Chapter Four: Losing It
- No Day but Today
- What do you think ‘live for the moment’ means?
- It means to live like everyday is your last.
- As a teenager, the author, Mary, says that Middle School (Secondary School equivalent) is a hard time for everyone but she had to deal with more. What did Mary have to deal with?
She had to deal with the fact that her father would die of cancer soon in a few years so her time with him was limited.
- Why would Mary have mixed feelings when her father passed away?
She did not want her father to leave their family, but she was also happy for her father as he did not need to suffer anymore.
- Mary said that ‘we simply loved each other and tied up many loose ends as possible’. What could these ‘loose ends’ be?
They may have had arguments in the past, and held grudges against each other.
Give at least 3 advantages of living each day like your last. Can you also think of a couple of disadvantages?
Everyone was united and loved each other, making amends for past mistakes or misunderstandings and there was a strong bond of trust among the family members. Everyone may have hid their sadness and worry for Mary’s father, but they are very stressed inside.
- I’m No Longer Mad
- Recall an instance you lost someone (could be through death or through separation because you migrated, etc.) or lost a pet.
- If you had none of these experiences, consider how you will feel if you lost someone you love dearly suddenly.
I would be devastated and probably go into a state of depression. I will do my best to recover from it though. I will always think of my pet or the person as alive, and never dead.
- Why does the author claim she is no longer mad?
She has forgiven her father for leaving her.
Consider the ‘five stages of grief’ by Dr E Kubler-Ross on page 101. Does this ring a bell for you in your experiences with grief or loss of a pet/someone? If yes, describe how you dealt with the loss of a loved one (could be human or animal). If you were fortunate enough not have experience grief due to the loss of a loved one, what do you think your reaction would be if you know you will be losing someone / a pet in the near future?
I will try to spend as much time with that person/pet so that I will not regret not utilising my time properly after he/she/it is gone.
- My Gift of Life
- This might seem morbid but what if you were told that you were diagnosed a terminal illness or a major disease such as cancer or a failing liver… What would be your first reaction?
Shock, but later I would inform everyone important to me, so that if I died nobody would be shocked.
- How many surgeries did the author, Sarah, go through in total? What were they for?
She went through seven surgeries to mend the severe damage done to the kidney by the fluid built up in her organs. The last surgery was for a kidney transplant.
- Why would Sarah be ‘embarrassed by the whole situation’ (bottom of pg. 105)?
She was afraid of the pain and did not want to go through it again, but she could not tell others except for her closest friends or else she would face humiliation.
- Sarah cried when she realized her mother had to spend Mother’s Day in the hospital with her. It was obvious she felt that her mom should not have been stuck in the hospital with her. What does it imply about the kind of Mother’s Day her mother should be spending?
She should have been spending her time at home relaxing and celebrating Mother’s Day.
- With kidneys that had only 10% kidney function, Sarah is still very active playing competitive softball. How is this possible?
She was very determined in her goals and wanted to be able to achieve them.
- The few weeks before her final surgery, Sarah’s parents were crying and talking on the phone a lot? What do you think was happening & why?
They were trying to persuade the potential kidney donor to donate her kidney, and after they succeeded, the donor had a kidney stone, which made them all the more worried for their daughter.
- If you were in Sarah’s position, with such weak kidneys, how would your parents react to your insistence on playing competitive softball? Why do you think they react that way?
They would freak out and try to keep me at home, because they do not want me to endanger my condition, and to survive until I get a kidney donor.
- A Broken Fence
Recall a time you would have liked things to have been different.
When I was in the principal’s office for committing an offense.
- What vehicle did Heather and her friend ride in? What were the clues to tell you?
A quad bike. The vehicle had four wheels, they still wore helmet.
- Heather said ‘ I leaned beside her, this not making sense’? What was it that didn’t make sense to her?
She was dazed, and was still in shock, so she did not believe that this was happening.
- ‘She’d escaped death’s grip but the damage was done’ tells you that Heather’s friend didn’t die. However, what do you think could have been the damage that was done?
Her friend probably had a broken limb, or became mentally impaired.
- On face level, the title ‘Broken Fence’ refers the section of the fence that Heather and her friend hit and broke. However, ‘Broken Fence’ could mean more than just that. What do you think it could mean with regard to the whole accident? Explain.
She probably ‘broke’ her friend, either making her mentally disabled, or breaking their friendship.
- Chain Reaction
- Do the experiment on the bottom half of page 116. If you still haven’t found close friends, it’s perfectly fine and normal. Just do the exercise based on three classmates/school mates you are generally comfortable talking to.
PRIVATE!!! Because I don’t want to offend somebody.
- If you met someone like Ashley with her hair in knots and wearing shoes covered with holes, what would the three things you would naturally think about her straightaway?
She was untidy, poor and blur.
- What was the chain-reaction that the title was referring to?
It refers to the chain reaction of kindness that Ashley wanted to start, where people felt good about themselves and people stopped making fun of others.
- Imagine you were Ashley’s mother. What were the words you would have said to Megan to help her cope with Ashley’s death?
Everybody will die someday. Its not a matter of living a longer life, but what you did with the years given to you that will make an impact.
- The Day an Angel was Made
- In your opinion, how old should one be at least before Death takes him/her away? Why?
They can go at anytime, as long as they have fulfilled their potential.
- The two friends, Shayln and Mackenzie talked about all the fun times they all had with Devon who had recently passed away. Why do people do that?
They are trying to make themselves remember Devon while she was alive, and not when she is dead.
- How much should Devon’s brother be blamed for her death?
He cannot be blamed for fighting with her. Looking at the situation, the outcome could be the exact opposite. Should Devon then be blamed for her brother’s death? I don’t think so.
- Life ‘can never be the same’ when you lose someone/ a pet you love and in this recount, Mackenzie used at least three ways to keep Devon’s memory alive. What were they?
She remembered her times with Devon, and would seek emotional support from her at her gravestone in the cemetery. She also thought that Devon looked peaceful.
- The title was ‘The day an angel was made’ and ‘the angel’ referred to Devon. What were her attributes that made Mackenzie call her ‘an angel’?
She never let a smile on her face turn into a frown. She was always cheerful, loving and caring.
- What one thing would you like to be remembered for if you had to leave this world before your friends?
For changing my attitude?
- My Star Girl
- When you care for someone, how do you show it? Just name one way.
By helping them when you can.
- What changed Elyse for the worse?
She started to smoke.
- The author of the article claimed that ‘there was nothing I could do’ and insist that ‘there’s nothing we can do when a friend takes a turn down the wrong path’ and that her friend ‘had to find her own solution to her problems’. If you had to disagree with these claims, how would you argue your opposing perspective?
We could try to slowly stop them through peer influence. Still, there IS a limit to such things, so we cannot always expect to control our friends.
- Complete the quiz of 5 questions on page 129 ‘Where do you stand?’ For every answer you give, give a reason why you took that stand.
1. Get involved | 2.We don’t have a school dance. But keep an eye open anyway | 3.Get involved DUH! | 4.Keep an eye open. He is probably emoing out like Somebody| 5. Keep an eye open, because if I get involved she may beat me up or become a sociopath.
- Read ‘Codependency’ Pg. 130. Are you in a co-dependent situation? If you are, then think of what you should do to get out of that state. If you are not, then what would you do to ensure you do not end up being in a co-dependent state with troubled friends?
- An Unforgettable Storm
- In your opinion, what is the best way for your friend to support you if you had a problem?
He/She could help me to understand and maybe even resolve my problems.
- When the floods came after Hurricane Katrina, people in New Orleans reacted in differently. From the article, list at least three ways people reacted in the article.
Many people were looting from other stores, their neighbors. Gabrielle even commented that she recognised some of those people to be their regular customers. There was also a man who help to warn Gabrielle and her family of the returning floodwater and told them to flee.
- Gabrielle was only going to visit her Mother and new brother for Christmas. Why do you think she isn’t she going back to New Orleans for good?
Everyone who had helped them and gave them joy were all there, which made everyday seem to be a birthday for gabrielle.