The terminally ill child bears her fate with far greater acceptance and equanimity than her mother, who after all, has spent her longer lifespan neglecting the import of her own attendant mortality. The child has had less time to become beholden to the reasons for life, or make the deals with herself as to why it might be held to be valuable. Her thread is not as extended as that of adults. Her sense of permanence less entrenched. Her mother had calculated to plug the void of meaning, by rearing a child. And now that stratagem was collapsing around her.