Ty has been doing well. He has two issues right now, and they are minor. The first being his emotional well being. He is simply down in the dumps. I know it will pass, and soon, it is just the latest hospital stay and surgery that has taken a toll on his psyche. I think a relaxing holiday weekend will fix that right up. The other issue is physical. He has been having increased tone and muscle spasms, and they cause him some pain and discomfort. Luckily they don't usually last long, and we have some new medication that starts this weekend so hopefully that will resolve itself soon.
So, the past couple of weeks have been draining and pretty depressing, but Ty is okay, he is on the up and up, and we have so much to look forward to.
I've been wanting to post another long-overdue "thank you" to the dozens of people who have done so much for our family over the past couple of months. But first, I want to remind you that there are so, so many families just like mine. Living this life in parallel. Wishing their child will be cured of cancer. Mothers and fathers who would do anything for their bald-headed baby. Who have to listen to them crying because their little lives are filled with pain, surgeries, needles, nausea, sore throats and weight loss and so much more. The suffering is cruel and it's brutal. But these kids are beautiful. They are so full of life - more than any others because they take nothing for granted. They are gifts from God, and we, as parents, are trying so desperately to hold onto each and every one of them. To give them the life full of fun and laughter that they deserve. They endure so much hardship at such a young age, each and every cancer warrior has earned the right to the most perfect, healthy and happy life imaginable. I want this for them. I want this for Ty more than anything in the whole world.
Then there are the seven kids that die every day from cancer. Seven families just like mine who are forced - kicking and screaming - to shift from survival mode to grieving mode. I have imagined myself in those shoes so many times, and it is unbearable.
I never wanted to embrace this life. I remember sitting in the playroom at Memorial Sloan Kettering for the first time, watching a group of moms huddled together in conversation. One wore a "team connor" tee, another a "stop cancer" hat, and another wore a tee with her son's picture on it. All of them had different colored cancer bracelets on. I thought, "I don't want to do that. I can't let cancer define me." How foolish I was! I don't have a choice. None of us do. So I wear my "SuperTy" and "Cure Cancer" tees, I write this blog, I follow other children on their journeys, I pass out bracelets, and more because this is THE MOST important cause and it makes me feel like I am doing a little something for these kids who deserve so much more.
Which brings me back to how grateful we are. There have been a number of people who have been actively working toward helping my family and others like mine, and I am so grateful. You are all doing so much for the cause, even if it's just keeping tabs on Ty and sharing his story of courage and strength with others. All of it is increasing awareness. Here's just some of the things that have taken place since March:
- Events for St. Baldricks. Thank you SO much for shaving your head in honor of Ty. What a huge sacrifice!
- Dragon Boat Race in Charleston - they won a gold medal for SuperTy!
- Relay for Life - several friends have created teams for their local relay for life, in which they asked to honor Ty
- Swim Across America - thank you to a local Pawling family who will be swimming in the Long Island Sound in honor of Ty
- Movie Nite at Abbey Lane Elementary - a movie night fundraiser was hosted for our family, all by a little girl with an idea for Ty
- Icing Smiles - a neighbor who I never met before poured her blood, sweat, and tears into the most amazing birthday cake for Gavin, all for an incredible pediatric cancer organization called icing smiles.
- Gavin's Party - another friend threw Gavin the most incredible birthday party at her party place and we are so grateful for giving us a day filled with fun and laughter amidst these tough times
- SuperTy Tee Shirt Drive - wow, I never imagined so many people would want a SuperTy tee. A friend sold 220 tees in just a couple of weeks!
- Fred's Team - One of Ty's nurses is running the NYC MARATHON to raise money for pediatric cancer research (CLICK HERE to visit her page)
- Pan Mass - Ty's Amazing Aunt Debi, is at it again (You may recall that she also ran the NYC marathon with Lou last year to raise money for Fred's Team). She recently created Team SuperTy and is training to bike 121 miles in the upcoming Pan-Mass Challenge for pediatric cancer research funding. (CLICK HERE to donate to her team)
Thanks, everyone, for your love and support. I believe in a cure for cancer, a cure for Ty, and all of you are helping us to find that cure.