Dealing with childhood cancer often seems like an endless struggle. Of course, the fight could end earlier than you hope. But that’s not the plan.
Every cancer parent knows that moment when you just want it to be over. We all have prayed, “God, if s/he is going to lose, why not just make it now.”
No parent wants their child to die, but even more no parent wants their child to suffer. When all news is bad news, giving up seems, for a fleeting moment, the best option.
So the pediatric cancer community looks for ways to inspire kids. There are child life specialists, recreation therapists, playrooms, video game systems. Every distraction imaginable.
For Harrison, inspiration has come from his family, his friends, his school, the kind professionals at UNC, Coach Avent and the NC State baseball team, Coach Walter of WFU baseball, Make a Wish, Meg’s Smile, and thousands of strangers who have sent card, well-wishes, and gifts. I was recently texting with a friend who was asking about Harrison. I remarked, “Without you he would not be where he is today.” And how true it is. Confidence is an important part of the fight. As we like to say, cancer may have taken his hair, but not his confidence.
His parents may lose heart, but not him. After all, the other option is to give up!
Tomorrow Harrison goes in for his quarterly sedation and chemotherapy. While he hates getting stuck, and really hates how the chemo makes him feel, he loves his friends in the clinic. And he loves the propofol! If only mom and dad could get some, we’d all rest through the procedure.
As you pray for kids and families in the childhood cancer community, you can pray that they will have confidence. Confidence in the medical professionals, in the treatment protocol, in their kid’s will to fight. But not in the empty hope that all will be ok in the end.
Things don’t always work out. Kids die from cancer. Thousands of them every year.
Thousands of parents and siblings who had believed it would all “work out” left holding a blanket, a pillow, a memory. But not holding their son or daughter.
But there is a confidence in our God. The only “greater good” to be found in a child’s suffering is the presence of a merciful and kind Father. And He is indeed good.