Last night I got to spend time with Amanda, Oscar's mum. For those who have followed my blog for a while, Oscar died at age 5 of cancer. Cannon and Oscar had an unspeakable bond. Oscar was Cannon's first friend. The first time I ever saw Cannon play and giggle with another child was here in Michigan with Oscar and Sally (Oscar's sister). I truly love and loved that kid - Cannon still watches videos of them playing together.
Last night as we had dinner at the house we stay in which is attached to the hospital, this man serving dinner was asking us about our stories. Amanda said "My son passed away at age 5 of cancer... our sons were friends."
The man's response blew me away...
"Ohhh, that's unfortunate."
It took every ounce of my 110 pound, 5'2" Scottish soul to not scream "IT'S NOT UNFORTUNATE, IT'S UNNECESSARY!"
My belly was in fire mode. But someone once told me "Pause when agitated", so I did. I paused..
And now my fingers are burning to write about it.
All night I tossed and turned...
I am not blaming this man or angry with him.
Rather, what he said is wrong! It's simply wrong and inaccurate.
It's not unfortunate, it's unnecessary.
It's unnecessary that my two friends' kids battle relapse now after years of No Evidence of Disease (NED). It's unnecessary that 10 of the 13 miles I will run in a few weeks have children on them that are no longer alive and that's just in the 2.5 years we have been in this cancer world.
I will get down from the podium in a second but the fact remains:
We need to educate.
We need to raise money.
And we need to FUND trials.
I have said it before and will say it again - we must fund trials. NOTHING! NOTHING else can change it! The scientists are waiting, they have solutions but no money to fund their research. How sad is that? That our kids could be alive today?
I appreciate every one of you reading this as childhood cancer is UGLY! It's painful.
BUT... it exists because we can't fund trials.
I had a conference call last week with a potential editor for my second book "After The Fight". It will be released in May 2016.
I said I want it to be more optimistic and illustrate that After The Fight is easier. Here is the problem - I am not sure it is? When you stop the BIG fight, the treatment fight, and you slow down it hits you like a 40 ton truck what just happened. And I can't lie, it takes a minute to pick up the pieces. You so badly want cancer to have stolen nothing else from you but the reality of that is that it has stolen many things in your marriage, your younger children's lives, your older children's lives, old friendships have gone, new ones have emerged. Everything, and I mean everything, is different and you need to put it back together like a BIG complicated puzzle. The one thing cancer can't take is our faith that it will get better and that's what my second book talks about. Keeping faith in unspeakable circumstances no matter what.
Cancer may have taken many things but don't ever let it take that FIRE in your belly! That, my friends, is what makes it all doable!
I've decided book three will be a comedy... show my funny side. I use to be a funny person - cancer stole my humor. I want it back!!!! Maybe I will call it "Stay Silly". Sorry, I digress. Trying to stay busy while Cannon is under. Four hours... yuk!!!!
I've said it before - prayer works - truthfully. Some of you know this but my husband was very sick when Cannon was 4 months old. Long story short, he had an immune disorder and they told us it was doubtful he would walk again. Cannon would sit on his knee while I would push the wheelchair. We prayed, we prayed, we prayed and we prayed and my husband is healthy as can be. You would never know he fought so hard.
So when I ask for prayers I've seen what they do. I have witnessed it and no one can ever convince me they don't work. This is why I am ever indebted to all of Cannon's warriors. I know sometimes, many times, prayers are not answered but that doesn't mean we don't ask. I will never stop asking. I pray for all the Warriors - the ones in Heaven and the ones on earth. You know when I write these words I think of the mother reading it who has prayed fervently and her child is no longer here and what does her heart feel when she reads that?!I wonder would I say this of prayer if Cannon was gone? I don't know the answer to those questions, only that my heart aches for those mothers and parents.
Note that I never capitalize you - you're not that important.
Just wanted to let you know that Cannonball Kids' cancer and its warriors are growing in numbers and strength. We are in this for the long game. We are creating more awareness and funding for two more trials to kick your ass.
My life is committed to beating you.
Quitters never win and winners never quit!!!
I am NOT
I will NOT
We should get Cannon's results today because this hospital is amazeballs. Stay tuned for NED post.
I continue to be
Thankful For The Fight
Read about our first grant for $100,000:
Purchase our Book - "Thankful For The Fight" - all proceeds to research:
Make a donation to our pediatric cancer research projects:
Host a card club event:
Melissa M. Wiggins
Cannonball Kids' cancer Foundation