Mattie Miracle 8th Annual Walk & Family Festival was an $88,000 Success!!!

Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation Promotional Video

Thank you for keeping Mattie's memory alive!

Dear Mattie Blog Readers,

It means a great deal to us that you take the time to write to us and to share your thoughts, feelings, and reflections on Mattie's battle and death. Your messages are very meaningful to us and help support us through very challenging times. To you we are forever grateful. As my readers know, I promised to write the blog for a year after Mattie's death, which would mean that I could technically stop writing on September 9, 2010. However, at the moment, I feel like our journey with grief still needs to be processed and fortunately I have a willing support network still committed to reading. Therefore, the blog continues on. If I should find the need to stop writing, I assure you I will give you advanced notice. In the mean time, thank you for reading, thank you for having the courage to share this journey with us, and most importantly thank you for keeping Mattie's memory alive.

As Mattie would say, Ooga Booga (meaning, I LOVE YOU)! Vicki and Peter

The Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation celebrates its 7th anniversary!

The Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation was created in the honor of Mattie.

We are a 501(c)(3) Public Charity. We are dedicated to increasing childhood cancer awareness, education, advocacy, research and psychosocial support services to children, their families and medical personnel. Children and their families will be supported throughout the cancer treatment journey, to ensure access to quality psychosocial and mental health care, and to enable children to cope with cancer so they can lead happy and productive lives. Please visit the website at: and take some time to explore the site.

We have only gotten this far because of people like yourself, who have supported us through thick and thin. So thank you for your continued support and caring, and remember:

.... Let's Make the Miracle Happen and Stomp Out Childhood Cancer!

A Remembrance Video of Mattie

Random Shots of Mattie, Family and Friends

July 31, 2012

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Tuesday, July 31, 2012 -- Mattie died 151 weeks ago today.

Nothing is wrong with your eye sight, tonight's picture is blurry. Despite its lack of clarity, this picture is very meaningful to me. I took it in August of 2008, and it was blurry because I was trying to walk and take a picture at the same time. Mattie had just begun treatment, which was why he had a full head of hair in the photo. However, a lot was going on in this picture. Mattie was headed to have a scan and fortunately we were accompanied by Linda (Mattie's child life specialist) and Debbi (Mattie's sedation nurse angel). Sometimes I wonder what was worse battling the cancer, or dealing with all the scans, which were done on a periodic basis to determine the effectiveness of treatment. Mattie's scan results typically revealed bad news, which maybe why the whole process of scanning brings about an emotional tidal wave for me.

Quote of the day: The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen. ~ Elisabeth Kubler Ross

Our friend Tim sent us today's quote. Tim saw this quote posted near a nurse's desk at Georgetown University Hospital, but when he read it, Peter and I came to his mind. It was a lovely way to start a Tuesday, knowing that someone in our Georgetown family was thinking of us. What Tim was telling us is that he considers us beautiful people. As Kubler Ross pointed out, beautiful people do not just happen. I agree with her wholeheartedly, but of course she wasn't talking about superficial beauty, which is fleeting anyway, she was talking about the more permanent beauty that lies within. Which from my perspective is the beauty that defines a person and when it radiates out, it impacts others. Can one achieve this inner beauty without having experienced suffering, loss, and struggle? Kubler Ross would say, NO!

Naturally there are many ways we each achieve our own inner beauty. Perhaps my ultimate way was by having Mattie for 7 years in my life and then losing him to cancer. But I am not sure. Nonetheless, it is hard to think of one's inner beauty, when emotionally being ravaged by the aftermath of cancer. Mattie's battle has left me hollow, angry, depressed, and anxious. Not a great way to live life, and yet how I go on living with these feelings, and with the visions we experienced of Mattie sick and then dying is an interesting dilemma. In all reality, it is a shattered life that forces one to be introspective, to understand the pain and feelings of those around me, and to some extent by helping others, I define myself and my place in my new world. So it appears that being vulnerable maybe a crucial part in the quest to finding inner beauty.

Today I returned to my zumba class. My teacher has been on vacation with her family, but when she sent out an email that class was resuming this week, I knew I was going. Zumba gets me moving, out of our home, and talking to people. Which in turn, gives my day some normal structure, which motivates me to do other things. Later in the day, I went to the mall, and while there I bumped into a former student of mine. She introduced me to her three year old daughter and we chatted for a while. This student is part of Team Mattie, so she is very familiar with the battle I endured, and yet teaching seems like a completely different part of my life now. It still is a part of me, but I am no longer the person I was when I was teaching. Despite these changes, the one thing I loved about teaching were my students. They were bright, sensitive, inquisitive individuals, who wanted to learn and ultimately wanted to help people. I would like to think that my days teaching, and helping nurture and cultivate students contributed to this inner beauty that Kubler Ross was talking about.

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