So today I went to Finn's CaringBridge page for the first time in...I don't know how long. Actually, I posted there on Finn's birthday in 2009, but I don't think I've been there since. I go there so infrequently now that I always stumble around and try to remember how to log in.
It's weird. How could I forget something that I knew so well? Just like I thought I'd never forget the phone numbers to the clinic that were burned into my memory or the phone number to the pharmacy.
Does time heal all wounds? Or do they just scab over? I'm feeling a little itchy at the moment.
Yesterday I got a phone call from the nurse at Finn's Denver oncology clinic. Another heartrending pediatric cancer diagnosis for a family in a town near ours and would I be willing to talk to the family? Of course!
There were a few things that brought me comfort at the worst times when Finn was sick: one was being able to communicate with so many of you via CaringBridge and hear your messages of support, and the second was the group of "cancer moms" who I became friends with who answered questions and who knew for real what was going on in our house.
It's hard. When I talked to the mom today, I could hear and feel the emotion in her voice. I could feel all of those emotions welling up in me: the fear, the helplessness, the unknown.
There are so few times in our lives that we can say we've walked in that person's shoes. This is one of them. It's an experience I would have preferred not to have had--for my child not to have had---but I will use it and if it can help someone else, I'm OK with that. More than OK.
I have often wondered if Finn's diagnosis was a message to me. And if it was, what am I supposed to do with it? I remember writing long ago that I wished messages wouldn't be sent through my children! Use me. Take me. Let it be be.
But we don't get to decide that.
Which, as a control freak, annoys me to no end.
But I digress.
Listening to this family's story, there is worry and fear, of course, but there are also parts that make me smile remembering our own situation--the family and friends who are rallying around them, bringing them food (I warned them to steer clear of the desserts lest they suffer my fate and gain 20 lbs. on the donated food!), running races, shaving heads, sending notes and cards, the prayers, the love, the positive energy.
So I guess as much as I'm thinking of this new family and Finn's journey today, I'm also thinking of all of you and how you made it all bearable for us.
I hope I can help someone like you did.