Hi guys! I thought I'd take a moment for a brief personal message, and many many thanks to Trudi from The Deco Detective. Trudi has been gracious enough to mention my endeavor to train for the Mayor's Marathon in Anchorage Alaska, and raise $4,900 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society to directly help families battling this cancer.
So far I have raised $1,789.78, but I still need your help to reach my goal of $4,900. I know times are tough right now, but this year alone the number of Americans living with blood cancers has grown from 823,000 to 894,000- and it continues to climb every day.
The most devastating fact is that most of these victims are under 20 years old. I just received this note from the mother of our youngest honoree and cancer patient, Aliza.
"It seems that the most recent intrathecal chemo that Aliza had with her lumbar puncture one and a half weeks ago, was the last straw to Liza maintaining hair. She is officially bald. And while I am biased, she looks particularly beautiful. There is something so pure to her little face without the distraction of hair.
As Jason and I strolled with Aliza on Sunday afternoon, enjoying the 50 degree weather, he asked me if I ever forget that Aliza has leukemia. My answer, sadly, was no. Every day I live and breathe her treatment protocols. And certainly, if she didn’t have a compromised immune system, we would have a very different existence, interacting with lots of other moms and toddlers.
That said, I do forget that she is “sick.” She is so happy and active that it continues to be very easy to do that.
But, now she is bald. It’s a visible reminder of all the poison that runs throughout her body. And it just doesn’t seem right on a little girl her size/age. And yet, it’s oddly comforting to know that this is it; that there is no more hair to lose (well, maybe her eyebrows and eyelashes…again).
It will be fun to see if Liza’s hair grows back the same color and curliness as it was before. “They” say that it often grows back differently, but that’s very hard to picture, especially since her dark curls seemed to fit her personality. Until then, with the patience we have learned these past few months, we will wait… Each day we are closer to that full head of hair."
Another update from Aliza's mom:
You are my heroes for signing up for TNT and committing to raise funds for those like my daughter, Aliza, who is battling infant leukemia. Aliza was diagnosed at 11.5 months of age and is undergoing 2 years of intense chemotherapy. The first three months of Aliza's treatment was entirely as an in-patient at the hospital. Now 17 months old, Liza leads a life quite different from other toddler's her age because she has a weakened immune system. As a result, she needs to be isolated from other children who may carry germs, and special care must be taken to minimize her risk for infections. In addition to receiving chemo, blood transfusions, platelet transfusions, etc. at an outpatient Clinic each week, she has periodic chemo sessions that are still so intense that they require that she stay in the hospital for several days at a time. As any parent would do for a sick child, my husband's and my life revolve around Aliza -- both her treatment and her well-being.
Unlike some other forms of leukemia, Liza's is extremely rare and very difficult to treat. It is critical that funds exist for research to continue in hopes of finding a cure for infants/toddlers like her.
Our country is undergoing tough financial times and many have concerns over job stability. It's understandable that this makes it a little harder to get friends, family, neighbors and coworker to dig into their pockets to donate. But I encourage you to be creative in your fundraising efforts and to stay committed to your goal.
From my heart -- thank you! And best of luck for a fun and injury-free training season.
Your donation will go directly to families like Aliza's, and to help pay for research. Imagine what the Decorology community could do if everyone just chipped in $10, $25, or even more. I promise the process is easy and fast, and 100% tax deductible. Thank you so much ahead of time, and cherish everyday with your loved ones!
Click here to donate.
In loving memory of Cody, my most constant and best friend, who succumbed to
lymphoma on Dec. 18th, 2008. I love you and miss you so much.