My father’s core quality was stoicism. Not the grim, showy, self-righteous kind but the cheerful, quiet, inward-oriented one that is its own reward. You could amputate his legs with a chainsaw without anaesthesia but if you asked him how he was doing in the process, he’d say, “Amazing! Excellent. So good!” This made it hard to get him medical care because doctors would ask what ailed him, and he’d say, “oh, absolutely nothing! In fact, I’m doing fantastic!” He once had a stroke and at the emergency room still tried to reassure the medical personnel that he was feeling amazing. It didn’t work but only because by that time he was slurring his speech quite badly.
I’m not rending my garments and tearing my hair out because that would be a betrayal of my father. He really really didn’t like people who were victims. I’ve never seen him feel sorry for himself. His whole life, for example, he suffered from scleroderma, which limited his range of movements and made many basic physical operations impossible. But this was never a topic of conversation or a pretext for a pity party.