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It’s good to be alive

Maria Diamond | Sunday, April 15, 2012

Dear Notre Dame community:

On Jan. 14, my dad’s birthday, I woke up in the dark with a terrible headache. I fell out of bed and was having seizures. I was later transported to the hospital. I was having an AVM stroke – a bleed in my brain caused by a malformation of blood vessels, previously undetected, which formed before I was born.

The doctors said that I would not survive, but God works in mysterious ways. One of those ways were the prayers of the Notre Dame community. I am alive today because of the prayers and support of all of you. I need to thank you for those prayers and your continuing prayers.

It’s good to be alive.

It’s good to have so many of you that cared for me: my friends and professors in PLS, Gretchen Reydams-Shils, the dean and administrators from Arts & Letters, my friends from Cavanaugh, the Spain abroad program, my Spanish major friends and too many other friends on campus to name here. Even people I never met cared enough to pray for me and send cards and gifts just because I am part of Notre Dame.

I was not in the hospital for three days before Fr. Jenkins sent me a rosary. Coach McGraw, Coach Kelly and the Sorin Society sent me a prayer book. I received books, Valentines and a box of a hundred and something origami cranes.

At the Academy Awards, the winners try in vain to remember all of the people who helped them and always leave the stage still trying to remember those they know they are forgetting. I feel the same way now. My brain does not work as fast as it used to, but I am trying. I will be back, and I will thank you all in person then. I will light a candle at the Grotto in thanksgiving for my school.

I am happy to be part of the greatest university out there. There are some silver linings to this tragedy and learning what “We Are ND” really means, is one of those. I needed you, Notre Dame, and you have been there for me.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Maria Diamond



April 12