Hello! My name is Shelly, the mom of Ethan, my hero. I first came to know of Kids Kicking Cancer about seven years ago while watching the morning news. I was so inspired by Rabbi G’s message that I jotted down several of his quotes and the name of his book into my phone. As life has it, I never looked back at that note.
In November 2017, Ethan was diagnosed with a form of leukemia rarely seen in children, called Chronic Myeloid Leukemia. This was a total shock to our family since Ethan was born with other medical challenges (including Von Willebrand Disease bleeding disorder, Cerebral Palsy left hemiplegia, and multiple food/environmental allergies). One day while visiting our oncologist’s office, I came across a Kids Kicking Cancer brochure, and it startled my memory of that note I had saved in my phone. It was at that moment the picture became very clear – God had prepared me for Kids Kicking Cancer to be a part of our family.
From the very first phone call to Kids Kicking Cancer, they were so welcoming and eager to get Ethan involved in as many activities as he could handle. Those activities have allowed him to take the focus off his medical challenges, and if even for that moment, direct the focus on having fun, making new friends, and just being a kid. Their understanding for the need to have a safer and adaptive environment for his medical challenges has given Ethan the opportunity to venture out and participate in events he might not otherwise have had the opportunity to attend. He hasn’t been as open to the power breathing as I would like him to be, but I think that will come in time. I know it’s secretly sinking in, as I find him telling me “Breathe in the light, blow out the darkness mom, it’ll be ok!”