Why? Because I’m finally starting a blog? No. Because I pulled my butt out of bed earlier than noon? No. Today is my favorite day because it’s the anniversary of hearing those incredible words: BEN SHOWS NO EVIDENCE OF DISEASE. Yes. Four years ago today we received the official results that Ben, a world renowned Dragon Slayer, had slain the beast named Neuroblastoma. My hero.
How will we be celebrating this event? Well, Ben will be celebrating at Camp Wapiyapi. We dropped him off on Sunday and will be picking him up on Friday. I am going to do everything in my power to NOT call the camp today to check in on him. Last year I called every day. Crying. Sobbing. Not once did I speak directly to Ben but the nurses consoled me daily. “He’s fine, Mrs. Brewer. Don’t worry about a thing. He’s having a great time.” Â It helped. A little. And then when I went to pick him up at the end of the week I was shaking with excitement. When I caught that first glimpse of him hanging out with friends my heart leapt in my chest. Oh! He’s going to be so excited to see me! I thought to myself. Nope. He didn’t say “Hi, Mom!” with great enthusiasm. He didn’t jump into my arms. His response was “Is it over already?”. He was clearly bummed. And my heart flip-flopped because I understood how awesome this experience had been for him. He’d had a blast and he didn’t want to come home. Bittersweet that he didn’t miss me? Sure. But I would get over it.
This year I haven’t called. I know he’s having a great time. And I’ll be celebrating today in my heart because it doesn’t mean that much to Ben — at least in his little seven-year-old world. He’s got other things to think about. And I’m desperate for him to think about THOSE things as opposed to IV’s and needles and scans and chemo and blood transfusions and fevers and all that other crap that dominated his life for too long. He’s doing a great job of letting it go. Maybe someday I will, too.
So, I’m giving you an assignment. Go celebrate your life! Here are some suggestions: Skip work. Eat an entire bag of potato chips. Call an old friend. Tell someone what they mean to you. Do SOMETHING that states you’re glad to be alive! Do it in Ben’s honor. Do it for all the little friends we’ve lost along the way. Appreciate what you have. Celebrate who you are. Be thankful for your life.
More tomorrow. 🙂