Typically the second day after chemo is the worst for Harrison. I guess that is when the toxins take their biggest toil on the body. Unfortunately, two days after his last hospital visit was the day of a big baseball game. Not surprisingly, he did not have his best game. Two strikeouts. He was devastated. After the game he said, “I am officially the worse baseball player ever!”
Well, there is no reasoning with an eleven year-old competitor. You just let him work it out.
He had another game the next day. It was against the only other team he has lost to this season. How would he bounce back.
And threw out the only stealing attempt.
And after the game? Euphoria.
Watching how cancer and treatment have affected him has been difficult. He was the kid someone once said, “He is to his team what Derek Jeter is to the Yankees.” At seven he had the baseball IQ to turn a triple play from short. He’s always been a phenomenal athlete.
And he has decided that cancer won’t stop him. Don’t have the wheels for short any more due to the Vincristine? Just move behind the plate and be the best catcher you can be. Can’t beat out infield singles any longer? Develop power. Can’t play quarterback right now? Become a basketball player. Run cross country. Learn a new skill.
That’s what determined, committed people do. Not sulk. Not complain. Not make excuses. Not play the cancer card. Not become bitter.
Win. The. Day.
Childhood Cancer families learn quickly that there isn’t a “normal.” We learn things are different, and change on a dime. We don’t make plans for next year, and rarely for next month. Maybe one day. But now, it’s just seize the day.
And when you strike out twice you can’t just quit. You can’t blame chemo. You can just come back the next day and lead by example. You live life facing forward.
I needed that lesson. Thanks, Harrison.