And this morning there is: I'm donning a yellow T-shirt and heading across town to a Daffodil Dash, a 5-kilometre fund-raising walk/run to support the mission of the Canadian Cancer Society. Really, though, I'm participating to support my nephew and his family as he lives so courageously and inspiringly and wisely and hopefully as a new dad.
Many of you will remember that last summer, I posted about my nephew's diagnosis of Ewing's Sarcoma within weeks of his daughter's birth. You responded so compassionately and generously at the time, and some of you have enquired since about Ryan's health. I've responded individually to those enquiries, but otherwise I've respected the family's privacy through the year of watching their beautiful baby grow to toddlerhood while Ryan went through a gruelling regime of chemotherapy.
However, a week ago, my niece-in-law Carly posted a celebratory photo on Instagram (and that gorgeous -- inside and out! -- young mother wears herYellow T-shirt beautifully), and I thought I could share that with you.
In the photo, Ryan holds up a poster that says,"Last Day of Chemo: 14 Cycles, 42 Doses, 70 Mesnas, 98 Gastrofil Injections, 10 Months -- He Did It!"
The text accompanying the photo: "Today was Ryan’s last day of chemotherapy! 10 months ago the oncologist told us we would be extremely lucky if Ryan was able to complete all 14 rounds. Therefore, today was huge for us. Although, Ryan is not feeling very well and still has pain, we could not be happier with how the last 10 months have gone. Today was hopefully the end of this chapter, and will be the beginning of our new lives of Ryan living with stable cancer. Everyday I have been in awe of his strength, determination, and perseverance. There is no doubt in my mind that Ryan will continue to defy the odds. I love you and I am so proud of you! YOU DID IT!!!!!!"
A bit of research makes it clear that Carly is determinedly positive in her celebration of "living with stable cancer." Ryan's cancer hasn't been vanquished, nor is it in remission. But it's stable now, and this sweet, strong couple have got to where they are today by being just this positive. So when Carly began organising a Team Ryan of family and friends to celebrate Ryan's progress so far, to support this next phase of living with stable cancer, and to contribute to research that brings more hope, I was happy to sign on. Even happy to wear that yellow t-shirt.
Wish us a good walk, wish us hope, wish Ryan many years at Carly's side, watching their daughter grow . . .