Ron Richards first got the idea of writing his book “Dodging Dandelions” while sitting with his wife Sara as a means of helping others understand that “living with life’s worst adversities need not mean having to lead a life of negativity.”
Their story is an easy (and extremely well written) read dealing with a very hard subject, dealing with their struggle to find balance as they battled against Sara’s recurrent case of breast cancer (which eventually metastasized to her liver and brain), as well as their adopted daughter’s severe mental illness, topped off by Ron’s own bout with kidney cancer, unemployment and financial hardship, etc. It also shows what true love between life partners, as well as between parents and their children can do to make life worth living despite its bleakness.
While most caretakers tend to be women, Richard’s “memoir” is unique view of circumstances from a man’s perspective of what it is like for a family to be dominated by circumstances often beyond their control, and yet survive.
Those of us who have lived through similar experiences will recognize the depths of the Richards family need to persevere, despite the sometimes crushingly brutal blows and “seemingly insurmountable” circumstances, and rejoice (whenever possible) in life’s special moments both during and after the struggles have ceased, as well as to find happiness when the grieving time is over.
Note: According to Ron, the title of the book, “Dodging Dandelions” came from a doctor’s statement comparing cancer to the bright yellow weeds that basically stated, “you have a choice to do nothing when they spring up; you can dig them out, or use chemicals to eliminate them. But chances are, as time goes by, more dandelions will appear.” Unfortunately, this was the case with Sara’s illness, although many other people are lucky enough to have their own cancers “cured.”