Open Letter to All Who Have Ever Helped Children with Cancer
Thank you from the depths of my soul.
Without you and your beautiful hearts to help children with cancer, without your sacrifice, the celebratory events of this past Mother’s Day Sunday would never have happened. Without you, our precious daughter would have been taken from this world 11 years ago. Without you, I wouldn’t be sitting here with tears of joy falling freely from my eyes while my huge smile happily hurts my cheeks.
Without you, this day would have only been in my dreams of what could have been. Because of you, this day became reality. And of all days, this day was on Mother’s Day. As parents, we have hopes and dreams for our children, and most of us hope that one day, our child will fall in love and marry the person who has captured their heart.
On Mother’s Day, I had the enormous blessing of seeing our daughter marry the love of her life. The horror and the terror of her childhood cancer treatment could not help but be present in my mind and my heart. Children who have been stolen by cancer and the parents who grieve their loss were present as well. My heart spread all the way across one spectrum to the other.
As I placed my head on my pillow that amazing night, I scrolled through a few photos I had taken. The emotions I held captive all day suddenly burst through the dam, and the floodgates opened. The stimulus? A photo of Melinda’s pure joy as she dances her first dance with her new husband. In the background, a man looks on with a look on his face that made me wonder what the thought behind that look was. I quickly recognized that his expression says, “I get to see the Happy Ending!” The man? Melinda’s pediatric oncologist, Dr. Dan.
With a most humble gratitude, I thank each of you: doctors, nurses, child life specialists, clinicians, technicians, researchers, and the advocates I am honored to work with every day.
With renewed commitment, I promise to do everything I can to help stop childhood cancer… so all children… and all families… can receive their happy ending, too.
I love you dearly. I owe this joy in my heart to each of you. Thank you!
on February 8, 2013