Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Happy Birthday to Me!

It’s my birthday.

You can get me a present.

It’s easy, and it’s free, and I’ll love you forever.

You see, it’s also Childhood Cancer Awareness Day. But people don’t know that. The pink ribbon products for October have already begun creeping in.

Please, don’t misunderstand what I am trying to say. I think support for breast cancer is important, too, but September? September is for our kids.

Kids like Colette.


This was Colette in 2005. In May of that year, just about 2 weeks after Morgan, Colette was diagnosed with Stage IV neuroblastoma. She was two and a half years old.

Colette endured surgery. Chemotherapy. Radiation. A Stem Cell transplant.

Can I share a little something with you?

Typically, pediatric cancers do not have their own treatment options. What kids get is simply smaller doses of adult treatments. Sadly, these treatments can leave kids with lasting issues. Colette? She now wears hearing aides, as the treatments she endured saved her live, but stole much of her hearing. Secondary cancers are common. So is infertility.

The National Cancer Institute’s federal budget=$4.6 billion. Breast cancer research receives approximately 12% of that funding. Prostate cancer gets 7%. ALL TWELVE major groups of  pediatric cancers COMBINED received less than 3% of it.

Maybe I’m biased. That could be. And that’s ok – this area is my passion, my focus.

I believe our children deserve better. And I think, as we continue to raise awareness of the reality of the issue, there will be a shift.

ColetteThis is Colette 6 years after diagnosis. This summer, she officially hit the “Five Year Cancer-Free” mark, which is huge.

I want more of our kids to see the five year mark.

I want there to be better options. New treatments. Less long-term side effects.

I want people to KNOW.

And that part? The knowing? That’s what I want from you, for my birthday. I want you to help others know. I’ve created a Twibbon that will let you add a gold ribbon to your twitter and facebook images. Would you consider that? Just for today.

It would be a pretty sweet birthday gift.

If you do, please leave me a comment and let me know, won’t you?


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