September is two days away. OK if I was really dedicated I would probably take the time to do some type of countdown and give you the exact hours, minutes…. whatever. But that requires a lot of math that I’m just not feeling up to at 955 at night when I’ve sat here for an hour playing with my blog “theme” and “widgets” instead of writing. Maybe avoiding writing is a tad more accurate. I’ve started this blog 5 times over the last 3 days and still haven’t completed it.
September means a lot of different things to a lot of people. For some it’s their birthday month — actually for a lot of people it’s their birthday month. I know a lot of people with September birthdays. Most people remember 9-11-01. September for me – and my family is very significant. September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Now in September 2006 that really didn’t mean anything more to me than knowing that April is Irritable Bowel Syndrome Awareness month. But on September 7th, 2007 Childhood Cancer became very real to us when a doctor we had never met before told us over the telephone in the MRI recovery room that our 5-year-old daughter had a golf ball size tumor on the right side of her brain.
Since then I have become one of those people I always said I wouldn’t be. The person who once something significant happens to them or a member of their family they suddenly become activists for a cause that before the significant event they had never even heard of. Oh sure I cried along with all of the rest of Indianapolis when WZPL does it’s annual “Make a Wish” fundraiser after Thanksgiving – one year the dispatchers got everyone on shift to kick in some cash and when we donated it requested they play the theme from COPS. But that was the extent of what I knew about Childhood Cancer. Now …. I can tell you that a lot of the things I shop for or buy revolves around the companies dedication to Childhood Cancer. I have hosted an Alex’s Lemonade Stand and a Glad to Give Bake Sale. We have participated in the Path to Progress 5k for the American Brain Tumor Association twice and are gearing up for the CureSearch walk this coming October. When I buy a new car in 2 years (because Dawson will be driving — YIKES!) it will more than likely be a Hyundai (despite my love of Mini Coopers) because they have a program called Hyundai Hope on Wheels where they travel the nation giving money to various Childhood Cancer facilities for research. I will eat at Chili’s any day of the week because they spend the entire month of September donating money to St Jude’s Children’s Hospital and even have opened their own wing in the Brain Tumor clinic. I will also eat at Applebee’s because they donate money to Alex’s Lemonade Stand. The string cheese you see me munch on at work — has to be Frigo Cheesehead’s because they also donate money in September to Childhood Cancer.
Yeah I have become THAT person. But I’m OK with it.
So this blog…. yeah ….. it’s supposed to be a grand declaration that I’m going to blog about Our Cancer Story piece by piece in a daily blog. For all five of my faithful followers this will be a LOT to read. I’m nervous on 2 levels. First you may not believe this but blogs take me anywhere from one to four hours to complete depending on the content and how much stuff I have to research and look up. And secondly, to talk about what our family has been through – using real emotions and not the smiling and nodding kind – is like ripping off a band-aid that has been neatly stuck in place for five years. I’m a little afraid about what is going to come gushing out.
Why now? Good Question. I guess I can use the excuse that it has been five years and this should be a year of happiness and celebration that we are about to hit the “5 year mark” — which officially means Teagan can now be covered by our AFLAC Cancer policy. But the truth is this started on June 14th, 2012. Dave and I were celebrating our 15th anniversary at a great restaurant overlooking the ocean and decided we should come up with 1 happy thing from each year we had been married. We were doing really good too…. jobs, kids, promotions, houses, vacations then we came to 2007. If you have ever heard car tires screech at a stoplight… that’s the sound that went through my head. It was so loud that people on the other side of the restaurant were looking around for a car that was trying to stop. And after a few feeble attempts at finding some of the good things from the last five years – because there have been good things – we just sort of quit. When the highlight from 2007 is that your 5 year old survived brain surgery suddenly a good vacation or a promotion doesn’t seem very important.
I should also point out this is Dave’s idea. He was the one who thought I should write about our story. Yes …. Dave…. the person who doesn’t read my blog. And when he does every 6 months or so his typical response is that I have “issues.” Oh trust me we are all about to find out just how deep those “issues” go.
I was against this at first but after finding my new favorite blogger “Mary Tyler Mom” I think I might be able to do this. MTM is a blogger in Chicago who last September blogged about her daughter Donna and their fight against a brain tumor. Donna was unfortunate in her battle and now keeps watch over her mom from a special place in Heaven. So if this mom can write her story I certainly can write mine as mine obviously has a better outcome. And as always…… blogging is cheaper than therapy. Lets face it if I was in therapy for my “issues” (like anti suburbia-soccer-mom-stereotype rants) we’d have paid for some therapist to travel around the world.
So starting on Saturday September 1st I will post the first of thirty (hopefully) blogs outlining the last 5 years of our life. And I have informed the three amigo’s (Dave, Dawson and Teagan) that they will be helping me and guest blogging at times. Teagan was the only one who was excited about that.
Here’s to ripping off band aid’s — See you all Saturday!