Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Memories...& The Cancer Recovery Foundation

Today I am at home again, after two busy days "out and about." I want to put a few things in writing before I can move forward.

On Monday, I met a mom with whom I have corresponded, but have never seen in person. She is the mother of two boys, one of whom passed away recently, after many months of treatment for cancer. We met at Katie's bench, and that first encounter lasted for two and a half hours. It was like greeting an old friend; we have walked a very similar path, as individuals and as mothers. We understood each other right away. The recommendation that we should meet came from mutual acquaintances, and I am thankful for it.

Monday was also the two-year anniversary of the day that we learned that Katie's cancer was back, and was going to kill her. July the 20th, 2007 was the day that Gregg, Katie & I went to Seattle Children's Hospital for a CT scan, trying to find the cause of the increasing back and leg pain that Katie was experiencing. The results showed a huge tumor in her abdomen, as well as tumor in her bones and liver. There was no medical treatment available to cure it. The end of the road, the end of our doctors' efforts to cure the illness, the end of our world, the end of our hopes for Katie to recover and live a full, long life; the end of our family of four, living & growing together. As the song says, "the end of the world, as we know it."

July 20, 2007 was also the beginning of the journey of acceptance. I'm still on that journey.

Yesterday, I met a lovely woman who was introduced to me (online) by another "cancer mom." This woman heard about Katie's Quilters, gathered a group and began to sew quilts, though we had never met in person. Yesterday, she brought a wonderful batch of quilts to the hospital, and gave them to the Hem-Onc ward. I was privileged to witness this "ripple effect," in which total strangers are moved - with love and caring - to bring comfort to people they've never met. Thank you, Mandy, and thank you, Jill, for introducing us!

Dear blogger Renee has written about the blessings she has received from the book called, "Cancer: 50 Essential Things to Do" by Greg Anderson. I recently bought a copy, because of Renee's writings about it. It's an excellent resource. The author was diagnosed with terminal cancer and given 30 days to live...about 25 years ago! He founded the Cancer Recovery Foundation, which spreads its message of hope and wellness around the world, and has written several other books, as well. Thank you, Renee, for posting about this book. Your writing is blessing many people who hadn't known about the book; now they are going to receive a message of hope!

If you are able, please visit Renee's blog and leave a message for her. Three of her close relatives are experiencing serious health crises - all at once - and with her loving heart, she has asked for prayers for them.


Elizabeth said...

It's always good to hear from you, Karen, and I'm sure your new friends will grow to love you and your generosity and grace. I'm happy that you are spreading the word as well about Renee and her family. More prayers is good.

Lakeland Jo said...

It is all so recent and raw for you- you have amazing strength and resilience, managing to hold onto so much warmth and compassion in the midst of such difficulty. I really admire you. I will hop across to Renees blog and leave a prayer

KBL 2 ORD 2 SAN 2 LUV said...

Just stopped by Renee's....I can't put it into words. Tremendous load to bear for her right now. I'm so sorry.

There's a blog ("Ninotchka") on my blogroll and I recently recommended that she visit your blog. She has family who is suffering through cancer with their daughter Emily.

Your writing is a salve. Nice to have it back here.

Busy Bee Suz said...

You have been busy Karen. I too and in awe of the ripple effect one can have...this would make Katie proud.
I am going to visit Renee.
Take care, suz

Anonymous said...

I was thankful too.

And even moreso that you typed "is the mother of two boys". *tears*


Anonymous said...

OOOOOOhhhhhhhhh karen, i am so happy you are back.....i've missed you tremendously. You lift me when i am sad and make me realize how many emotons i have in common with people , just like me, who are walking this grief path - you have been traumatized the way I was! We wereasked to explore pats of ourselves and other's , that most arne't expected.....we are warriors like our children. We really are ad i bet sheis your inpisration. the same way henry's live is t me!!! I love hearing about your travels..........i'll be back...i've been catching up on you all weeekend....lov-lov-lov the new pics...and just so you know, you've inspired me to start my own blog.....moving from cb and excited to do it.....i love the ways you express your life thorugh words and are my hero!!!!!
psss...I'd love tostart a katie's quilter program here......wouldn't that be cool????

michelle Tucker