This weekend marks an important milestone in any survivor’s life. My daughter is officially 5 years out from cancer treatment. When I mention this to her, she says she does not remember much of it, so she does not want to celebrate. I, however, remember everything and am celebrating in my heart.
The celebration is that today she will be performing Scott Joplin in a piano recital. And the celebration is her smile, her hug, and her making pancakes and a mystery “raspberry sauce.”
The celebration is remembering all the people who made it possible for her to be here. Those in my small town who held a fundraiser in her honor to help me ride through a year I was unable to work, kind notes from preschool and kindergarten classmates, relatives who visited weekly, doctors and nurses who cared for her/us, countless people who kept her in their heart and prayed or sent healing thoughts, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Team in Training folks that taught me to train to walk my first marathon and raise funds for people like my daughter, and lastly the CHIP program (Children’s Medicaid), the program that was first on President Obama’s agenda to restore upon entry to office that provided the bulk of the 2 million dollars required to save her.
The after effects of trauma are often mysterious. I know I struggle with them. I am unsure what the future holds for her, but I am in awe of her strength, her humor, her “pizzazz” as she calls it, and her brilliance. She is one strong/fragile person and I’m glad she is here. Praise be.