- 365 days of cancer
- 167 nights in a hospital bed
- 16 surgeries
- 44 days of radiation therapy
- More than 50 CT, X-rays and MRI scans
This is how Ty spent more than 1/4 of his life so far. But, during this year-long journey, Ty and our entire family were also blessed with all of the following:
- 1 ride in the front seat of a Long Beach fire truck
- 1 surprise meet and greet with Spiderman, Batman and Superman who came to our home
- 1 meet and greet with Santa Claus who came to our house with the Pawling Fire Departent
- 1 amazing Make a Wish trip to Disneyworld
- 1 very special fly-by of Manhattan while Ty was traveling (thank you Patrick)
- 1 meet and greet with Barney
- 1 more meet and greet with Spiderman who visited our hotel room in Disney
- 1 Broadway show – Spiderman Turn Off the Dark
- 1 adoption by the Fordham Football Team
- 1 over-the-top decorated house for Christmas thanks to dozens of friends and neighbors
- 1 very special adopted family member in Mary Pallotta and the Guardian Brain Foundation
- 2 amazing fundraisers hosted on Ty’s Behalf by Robert Manzoni Memorial Fund and the Iron Riders MC
- 1 "Pajama Day" fundraiser at Sunshine Schools in Pawling
- 1 fundraiser for Mahopac "Relay for Life"
- 1 friend who ran a marathon for Ty
- 3 friends (including Aunt Debi) who completed their first triathlon for Ty
- 3 friends who shaved their heads in honor of Ty for "St. Baldricks"
- 2 friends who participated in "Cycle for Life" in Ty's honor
- 2 children who asked for donations for Ty in lieu of birthday gifts this year and 1 extended family who did the same at Christmastime instead of exchanging gifts
- 750+ lollipops delivered to our home
- Countless meals cooked for my family from caring friends and neighbors
- Beautiful blankets and shawls that go everywhere with us - hand knitted by the most loving people in the world (shout-out to Ma Sullivan, Tracey McCarthy and Lisa Martin!!)
- Toys, games, stuffed animals, costumes and artwork that Ty will forever cherish
- Visits from friends near and far who come just to pray for Ty and wish him well
- Countless cards from children and adults across the country. I keep every single one!
- 4,099 "likes" on Facebook (c'mon, let's break 5,000!)
- More than 700,000 visits to this blog
Of course, Ty's speech is still compromised. In the attached "thank you" video, he says he's still beating up cancer... thank you everyone... I love you...
This list doesn't even scratch the surface of the blessings we have been graced with over the past year, and it doesn't even include all of the random acts of kindness that have been directed toward me and/or Lou. It truly helps to counteract the hell we are also living in, and we thank you. Even the simplest "hello to Ty" on Facebook brightens our day.
Tonight Lou and I took Ty out to celebrate with a "big steak." This was also a gift from someone we have yet to meet. My nephew's generous football coach told us he wanted us to do something fun with Ty to celebrate, and that's exactly what we did (thank you Coach Shilling!). He was such a good boy at the restaurant and we really enjoyed it. The only incident occurred when he had to go to the bathroom, and it was kind of refreshing because it was no different than any parent's experience with a three-year old in a public place who immediately has to "go pee-pee." The picture below is dark because of the lighting inside the restaurant, but look at that smile!
Today is a happy anniversary because Ty is here and he is doing great. I hope to celebrate 60 more anniversaries of this date with him by my side. XOXO to everyone, and good night.