"In order to survive life and its many obstacles, I believe we must expect the unexpected."

After facing many barriers, surprises, and disappointments, a courageous woman offers a positive, take-charge view of life. While never denying the difficulties posed by changes and challenges, author Q presents a series of recollections that illustrate resilience and perseverance. A major obstacle for her was breast cancer, resulting in surgery and lengthy, daily radiation treatments. Years passed; she seemed to be living a regular, healthy life. Then came a recurrence, requiring extensive changes and invoking a sense of her mortality, which was underscored by other health problems. She also battled with grief—the loss of three close relatives in a short span of time. She advises her readers confronted with difficult situations to develop an accepting attitude, find a confidant—a good listener whom they can talk to in times of distress, “glean a little humor,” and move forward as gracefully as possible.

Q, an entrepreneur who has also worked for the United Nations and the Department of Homeland Security, communicates her message in the form of compelling vignettes, some demonstrating the positives that can arise when families unite and others showing the best outcomes for unpreventable crises. Her writing style is based on personal stories. These accounts are sometimes necessarily dark when treating with disease and death, but they also include the spice of humor. For example, she details with appropriate irony the many complexities of living in the heart of New York City, where even such a simple task as parking can be maddening, and obscure traffic regulations can cause confusion even to a seasoned resident. Several challenges described vividly involve travel, such as the unpredictable complications of canceled flights and changing plans requiring flexibility and nerve. Q believes that, by sharing her stories, she is imparting a sense of possibility for ever-renewing hope and determination.

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