Finding this story in the sports section of the New York Times is a positive sign of how far we as a society have come in our ongoing discussion about grief.
Who would have thought even five years ago that a professional athlete would give an intimate interview about dropping out of playing his sport to care for his wife in the last months of her life and how her tragic death changed his priorities?
|Dominic and Katie Moore|
The world of professional ice hockey is full of ice, blades, speed, sticks, pucks, mixed in with a very heavy dose of testosterone and ego. Once the gloves come off in the heat of competitive play, you know that some kind of awful fight is about to begin and someone will lose teeth and/or break something.
It is not a world of talking about your feelings or inner emotions. It is not a world of taking time out to heal yourself. Toughing it out is what it's all about. Why do you think professional ice hockey has something called a "Power Play"?
Moore, 32, was playing for the San Jose Sharks when his wife, Katie, was diagnosed in the late spring of 2012 with a rare form of liver cancer. He took a leave of absence during the 2012 playoffs while she fought her cancer and Moore did not play last season either, when Katie, 32, lost her battle on January 7, 2013. Following her death, Moore also started a charitable foundation in his wife's name called the Katie Moore Foundation.
Now Moore is back and as a unrestricted free agent with a one year, $1 million contract, he will be playing for a new team: the New York Rangers. With his decision to make a comeback, he courageously talked to reporters last week and openly discussed his time off while taking care of Katie and how he spent the time after her death.
"Dealing with the disease and what we went through, it's a lot to try and describe in one simple answer," Moore said. "But one thing I'm grateful for is the time we had. In a way, those months were the most special months with each other that anyone could possibly ask for, despite it being the most difficult and painful months that anyone could possibly deal with."
I think Rick Carpiniello, who wrote USA Today's story about Moore summed it up best: "Regardless of your NHL allegiance, if you are not rooting for the Rangers' Dominic Moore next season you need to go out and get a heart."
Here is the New York Times story about Dominic and Katie Moore: