A Childhood Cancer Survivor Blogging about the World of Childhood Cancer

Posts tagged ‘Happy Quail’

Childhood Cancer Advocacy Momentum — Connect Connect Connect

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My name is Lee, and I am Melinda’s mom. As a college sophomore, Melinda has responsibilities that make time for blogging difficult. Sleep is a rarity. The world of childhood cancer still goes on, which means this blog about childhood cancer needs to continue. Melinda has invited me to be her guest blogger until Pepperdine lets out for the summer.

Since the time of her treatment, six years ago now, we have worked together as a “team” to help children with cancer. Having a strong focus to help others was instrumental in Melinda’s physical and emotional recovery from cancer, and I have no doubt it has helped me as well. There is something indescribable about helping others when your very own self is falling apart. Isn’t it true we feel as humans that we need to have our act together before we can help anyone else; we need to have all of our “ducks in a row” before we have “extra” to output for others. The plain truth is, we are often more compassionate, more understanding, and more helpful when we are broken, mangled, or bent. Any parent whose child has fought childhood cancer falls into this broken, mangled, or bent category. I am no different. My heart will never recover from the terror of Melinda’s suffering. But… I will rejoice every moment of every day for the rest of my life that she has come through the suffering. I intend to take this mangled heart of mine and form its love into a huge, fierce fire– a fire that will light the world of childhood cancer.

The childhood cancer community is a community no one chooses or dreams of joining. We are “drafted.” Not long after I was drafted, I realized I needed to “Enlist.” My love for children is so deep, so great, so overflowing, that I have no choice but to help these children in every way I can. I will admit there are kid parts of me that have never grown up. I have been known– on many occasions– to randomly and suddenly break into a skip. This is just one thing I love about kids; they teach us joy. They teach us about what we have discarded and left behind in our adult lives. When that adult reserve kicks in and tells me not to skip next time, I plan on inviting it to join me!

I want to express my thanks to moms and dads in the childhood cancer community for sharing your daily lives through social media. I feel I know so many of you, just from following. You have given me a better understanding of the problems, pressures, and battles you face each moment of each day. I want you to know how much I care. I want you to know how hard I will work for change. I want you to know you are not alone.

Finally, I am excited about the momentum that is building. I am honored to know many of you who work your tails off so that there can be newly funded research for less toxic treatments. I am amazed by the courage of so many of you who have lost your children to cancer that now run foundations to help the kids. After five years of my personal advocacy, it’s clear to me that the tides are beginning to turn. Four years ago, a dear lady named Christine began a campaign intended to raise awareness of childhood cancer. She was inspired by her friend, Deliece Hofen and her son, Braden, who is currently undergoing a bone marrow transplant. The campaign aimed at getting Oprah’s attention for a segment on her show and was called, “Oprah, Please Do A Show On Childhood Cancer.” Within no time, the childhood cancer community came together with a loud voice. Unfortunately, Oprah did not answer our pleas to help raise awareness. She had never done a show about childhood cancer and never did one before the show went off the air.

Recently, the outcome of our cohesiveness did bring about something extraordinary. “Under intense pressure” from social media and grassroots, Josh Hardy was able to get the medicine he needed, but had been denied. Another beacon of hope for progress is the Gabriella Miller Kids First Research Act. Because we are connected and engaged with each other in our community, we are beginning to achieve some success. This means we have opportunities to save kid’s lives! This means we can build even more momentum for avenues of change.

Josh Hardy

http://video.foxnews.com/v/3329179339001/7-year-old-cancer-patient-receives-new-drug/#sp=show-clips

The Gabriella Miller Kids First Research Act

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/03/11/congress-passes-bill-to-support-childhood-cancer-research/

Yes, let’s connect, connect, connect so we can achieve as much as we possibly can. Childhood cancer is the #1 cause of death by disease in our country. Seven children die from cancer every day here in the United States and over 40,000 children are currently in treatment. Many of these children fight for years. Many of these children suffer even more from the effects of their treatment than they do from cancer.

To all my fellow onc-parents, I love you and your children.

“Charge!!!!”

Please leave your contact on this page so we can all connect.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Grace-A-Childs-Intimate-Journey-Through-Cancer-and-Recovery/149423578414076?ref=hl

Twitter: https://twitter.com/1ballerina

            https://twitter.com/HappyQuailPress

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Grace Recieves A Silver Medal Ippy Award– Finalist in Benjamin Franklin Best First Book Nonfiction

Grace: A Child's Intimate Journey Through Cancer And Recovery

It’s two days after Mother’s Day, and today, I am writing about my mom.

As I begin to type, I search for the words to begin what I want to say–and instead of words–tears come rushing like rainfall down my face.  I love her.  I love her so much.

My mom listens to me.  She believes what I say. Without this gift she has given me, my cancer would not have been discovered until much, much later.  I would have suffocated.  But, my mom believed me when others did not.

And then… when my heart needed to give back in order to heal, guess who supported me every single step of the way? 

Then, when I began writing as a way of healing, she looked forward to hearing what I had written.  She believed it was something that could help others.  She took all of those spiral notebooks with scribbles and she typed the 90,000 words I had written into book form.  Have you ever typed 90,000 words?

It would have been easier to submit my story to a big publishing house at this point… but my mom’s Mama Bear instinct wouldn’t allow her to let someone else have the rights to my work.  She says it belongs to me as long as I am a minor! 

The next step has been an unbelievable amount of work for her, working to establish our publishing company, Happy Quail. Not many mothers and daughters have the opportunity to work together for a cause that both are passionate about.  By establishing Happy Quail, we have been free to make decisions about publishing my book that will benefit children with cancer.  Yes, the Quail is VERY Happy when we can do anything to help toward a cure!  

My mom has worked so hard that Grace: A Child’s Intimate Journey Through Cancer and Recovery has been honored with the following Independent Publisher Awards:

From IBPA website:

“The IBPA Benjamin Franklin Awards, which includes fifty-six categories recognizing excellence in both editorial and design, is regarded as one of the highest national honors in small and independent publishing. Winners will be announced at IBPA’s Publishing University, just prior to BookExpo America.”

2011 Benjamin Franklin Awards: The Bill Fisher Award for Best First Book (Nonfiction)

http://www.ibpa-online.org/pubresources/benfrank2011_finalist.aspx

Ippy Awards Silver Medalist Juv-Teen Young Adult Nonfiction #24

http://www.independentpublisher.com/article.php?page=1442

The very, very best thing about these awards is that they will help children with cancer. Awareness is the first step toward giving hearts stepping up to help.

Mom, your giving heart will make a huge difference—beginning right now—in the lives of not only children with cancer, but others whose light has gone out for a bit.

Your love for me is lighting the world. 

Coming out from school when my first books arrived!






Grace: A Child’s Intimate Journey Through Cancer and Recovery

http://site.happyquail.net/

Lots of new information on the Happy Quail website:)

Grace is here!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Launch Notes Radio, Craig Pollard, and Cancer for College

I loved meeting Khrys Vaughan of Launch Notes Radio this morning!  What a lovely lady, and what a wonderful thing she is doing by encouraging women starting new businesses.  

Have you heard about Craig Pollard? He has been in the news because he began an organization called Cancer for College. He is a cancer survivor who decided he is going to make a difference in the world, and I have to tell you that everything he is doing for cancer survivors makes me so grateful for him.  Whenever someone does something for cancer survivors, I feel like they are doing it for me.  Thank you, Craig, for helping cancer survivors accomplish their dreams.  And please thank your USC roommate, buddy, and cancer survivor supporter, Mr. Will Ferrell.  You both inspire me to do all I can to help others.

Childhood Cancer and Launch Notes Radio

Melinda sends her love to friends and family.  Tomorrow, on Wednesday, May 26, 2010, Melinda will be a guest on Launch Notes Radio.  The broadcast will be at 8:30am PST/ 11:30am EST/ 10:30 am CST/ and 9:30am MT, and it will last for about 30 minutes.  Melinda will talk about her book, Grace: A Child’s Intimate Journey Through Cancer and Recovery.

 Anyone with an internet connection can listen by clicking the link below:

 http://www.blogtalkradio.com/launchnotes

 Also, anyone can call 646-929-1073 to ask Melinda questions… she would love this!

Thank you so much for your support of Melinda’s project to raise childhood cancer awareness, for supporting Melinda’s mission to help people with cancer, and for helping her with her ultimate goal of finding a cure for cancer. 

 With our sincere appreciation,

 Melinda Marchiano and Happy Quail

International Book Awards for Grace

I admit I am still squealing, and it is still sinking in… I received two emails from the International Book Awards this afternoon.  The first email congratulated me for winning the Health: Cancer category of the International Book Awards and the second email congratulated me for being an award finalist in the Spirituality: Inspirational category!  Oh my gosh… oh my gosh! 

If you are interested in seeing a complete list of winners and finalists, here is the link:

http://www.internationalbookawards.com/2010awardannoucement.html

I am so happy… what better way to celebrate than thanking God and going to dance!

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