Monday, April 14, 2014


Hate is the only four letter word I refuse to use.


Others flow, far to freely, on too many occasions.

So why draw the line at the word hate?  What's so bad about that particular word?

Today, Braden had a surgical procedure to remove his Hickman central is a line that ran through his veins to deliver his chemotherapy and then drugs to counteract the damage that the chemo did to his body.

It is a rather medieval looking device with long tubes sticking out of his chest that have caps on them to connect to the tubes from the drugs so they can be pumped through his body.

It's nice that it's means he is getting better and no longer needs it. We may actually break out of the bone marrow transplant unit at the end of the week,

a full month earlier than they predicted his earliest dismissal day from the hospital would happen.


They also did a bone marrow aspirate to check his bone marrow for any signs of remaining MDS cells, that's the pre-leukemia Braden has that was caused by the treatments to save his life from relapsing neuroblastoma.

His body is now fueled by his 11 year old brother's donated bone marrow cells, and he is kicking butt and taking names with this bone marrow transplant,

But now it gets real. Now we wait for two days to find out if the treatment he just went through has killed the cancer cells....

...and my stomach is in knots because if it's not gone...

...I can't even type it,

Let alone think it.

It simply has to be gone.

Braden has been fighting cancer for 6.5 years...

and he's 9 years old.

He has no idea what life is like when you are not in continual treatment. He has autism and doesn't even know he has cancer, so he just fights...

and lives life to the fullest every day with joy and love.

As he was still in a deep sleep from sedation, he had one single tear dripping from his eye and it broke my heart in a million pieces.

Braden never cries about his cancer, he hasn't cried ONCE during his bone marrow the contrary...

he has been shooting basketball hoops, playing, and painting beautiful pictures.

But it does wear on him....and that tear showed it.

I often hear people tell me how they hate cancer because of what it has done to them or to someone they love.

And this tear completely ripped my heart out. Just another time cancer was hurting my baby.

But I will never say that I hate cancer.

The reason is simple.

Hate comes from an ugly, evil place.

Hate is the reason that a grandfather, his 14 year old grandson, and a woman were just shot and killed in my hometown.

A fourteen year old beautiful boy who had his entire life ahead of him. A grandfather who was lovingly taking him to try out to be a part of a singing group, a dream of his. A woman who was making her weekly visit to her mother at a retirement village.

Gunned down randomly by a crazy man yelling "Heil Hitler" as they placed him in the police car.

You see, they were killed at two different Jewish locations, likely because he believed they were Jewish.

THAT is hate...

THAT is evil...

And that is simply horrific...

and as much as I actively dislike what cancer has done to our son and our family, I simply REFUSE to allow this disease to make me hate.

I refuse allow cancer to conquer me.

I refuse to allow it to make me hate.

cANCER, evil and hatred will never receive my soul.

As much as I would have chosen another path for our son, it is the path he has had to walk. I would give my life to change that for him, but I cannot.

cANCER has blessed us in so many ways. We have been shown how much love, support, compassion and true selflessness is in the world. People have shown us all of that with open arms. As they did when the community showed up to welcome Zach home after he arrived from donating his bone marrow to Braden to try to save his life.

THAT is love.

THAT is goodness.

So in a very twisted turn of events, cANCER has brought beauty and grace to our lives by showing us exactly how much more good there is in the world than evil.

My heart breaks because of our son's one single tear dripping from his eye.

I allow myself to feel sadness and fear because I am human,

but I get back up and I fight every single day because I refuse to allow hate in my life in any way shape or form.

Hate is the worst four letter word in the world because it consumes souls and allows evil to reign and spread.

We conquer hatred through loving acts and words, and through faith.

God has Braden in His hands and I trust Him to care for him and that far surpasses hatred and evil.

"Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love."