September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month and I can think of no better way to honor the extraordinary parents caring for their ill children than to tell their stories. Even better, I want to let them tell their own stories, in their own words.
One way for parents whose children have cancer to process their experience, and to keep loved ones up to date, is by writing about their experiences. There are thousands of heartbreaking and inspiring blogs in the 'blogosphere' where parents are writing through unspeakable pain, fear, faith and love.
It can be traumatic reading – which is why I believe it is our honor, duty and privilege to learn about these stories and to share them. If we have been lucky enough never to have lived through the particularly horrific experience of losing a child to cancer, I think it's important we let ourselves feel the gratitude, empathy and inspiration of those parents who have.
Earlier I wrote a post about an amazing man, a comic and a father, who told the story of his toddler's battle with cancer and his own meteoric rise to The Tonight Show at the very same time. The video went viral on YouTube and it is beyond worth watching. I have never seen this experience told so astonishingly, so briefly, and with so He speaks eloquently for himself, so I will simply offer here the story of one of America's heroic dads battling for his child's life – and for his own.
I have written before about Ty Louis Campbell, one of cancer's smallest and fiercest warriors. His heartbreaking, roller coaster battle against a rare and aggressive cancer is chronicled in his mother's heroic blog, where she shares such raw emotion and truth you cannot do anything but read, weep and pray so, so hard for this complete stranger who feels like your sister – whose child feels like your own.
How do you know when you are losing the battle?
SuperTy, as his family calls him, is not doing well. In a series of indescribably painful blog posts in the last week or two, his mother has shared with us the most intimately painful realization – the battle is almost over. I will share more of her story in tomorrow's post.
Today, let's get inspired and get caught up on the life and hope of Ty Louis Campbell and his family.
Every day this family beats the odds.
1. SuperTy: The Story of a Child with Cancer and an Unstoppable Will to Live introduces a little boy everybody calls SuperTy because of his inspiring story. One year ago this week, his parents, Cynthia and Lou, faced every parent's worst nightmare: Their little boy, their first son, was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive form of brain cancer at the base of his skull. His mother has chronicled their story in her beautifully written blog, "Ty Louis Campbell: Our Little Fighter."
2. SuperTy 2: Living Life to the Fullest When Your Child has 'Terminal' Cancer shares a mother's story of finding faith and joy while facing a parent's worst nightmare. Since Ty was diagnosed with a rare, aggressive and deadly cancer, he has been through numerous life-threatening surgeries and undergone relentless and intense treatments of radiation and chemotherapy. Read this to learn how the family copes.
3. How Is This Miracle Child Beating 'Terminal' Cancer? Doctors gave 'SuperTy' a deadly cancer diagnosis. 'Oh yeah?' says this super survivor! This post shares some great news. Ty's parents – and all of the people who know and love this family and are cheering them on – were waiting for crucial news from the latest brain scan. The waiting was agony. The news was miraculous.
In tomorrow's post I will share the latest developments in Ty's life.
In the meantime, please join me in supporting all families battling mightily against cancer. Contact the local chapter of the American Cancer Society to get information. Or, if you know a cancer warrior, lend them a hand.
Want to catch up on another story of another family caring for a remarkable child? Read the series on Fostering Love: