Tonight's picture was taken in August of 2008. Mattie was in the hospital and had assembled this airplane with nails and a hammer. One of the many things Mattie had in his hospital room was tools. It wasn't unusual for us to have a hammer, a screwdriver, a hot glue gun, and other things to keep Mattie engaged, busy and creating. Mattie was very prolific during his 14 month battle with cancer, and I am thankful he was, because he left us many gifts behind to remember him.
Quote of the day: Nothing contributes so much to tranquilize the mind as a steady purpose — a point on which the soul may fix its intellectual eye. ~ Mary Shelley
Peter and I went for a two mile walk today which was challenging given that the humidity was back! However, a change of scenery was greatly needed. I continue to be fighting a migraine, and though I am functioning, I am still in pain. Tomorrow is July 23, which may seem like just another calendar day, but for us it is a day in which our world was profoundly changed. Because on July 23 of 2008, Mattie was diagnosed with cancer. I can recall how Mattie was diagnosed and every aspect of how that day played out. It is almost like a record playing in my head, with scenes, voices, and feelings permanently in my memory bank! A cancer diagnosis day is a traumatic day for anyone, and chances are if you ask people impacted by the disease, they can tell you about their day quite vividly. However, in Mattie's case, I received this information over the phone in a hospital's radiology waiting room. I brought Mattie into the hospital for a simple x-ray, expecting to find out he sprained his arm or tore a ligament. In the radiology waiting room, I was surrounded by six other people waiting for their test results. At first the radiologist wouldn't tell me the results. He wanted me to return to Mattie's pediatrician's office for the news. However I told him I wasn't moving a step without knowing what he knew. I remember feeling so stunned, physically ill, and yet externally I was calm, cool, and focused because I had Mattie with me and I did not want him to panic. Yet while going through this, I had six people I did not know staring at me and Mattie while I was on the phone! Little did I know, this was going to be one of many more days to come, in which I would be receiving terrible scan results on Mattie's condition. All of this remains with me, and it is no wonder now when I have to go to a hospital and wait for scan results that I am totally on edge. In my mind scans are associated with terrible and life threatening news, and my once innocent attitude on the world, has been crushed. Because I know bad things do happen to good people, and age doesn't matter, since at any age one can be stricken by a life threatening illness.