Mattie Miracle 9th Annual Walk & Family Festival -- Raised over $97,000

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

May 7, 2013

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Tuesday, May 7, 2013 -- Mattie died 191 weeks ago today.

Tonight's picture was taken in April of 2003. Mattie was a year old at that point and though he was standing, he wasn't walking at all without assistance. The irony of this photo was we printed it out and had it on the refrigerator for the longest time. As Mattie got older, he would come into the kitchen and stare at this particular photo. So one day, we walked him back out to the coffee table and compared his current height to the height he was at in the photo. Mattie got a whole kick out of this exercise because by that point he was towering over the table in comparison to what you see here. Kids love to measure their growth and to see that kind of progress. Nothing shows progress better than a picture!

Quote of the day: Old age is no place for sissies. ~ Bette Davis

In the midst of running around and doing chores today, I went to visit my friend Mary in her assisted living facility. I knew her daughter wasn't feeling well and that her caregiver wasn't working today. So I appeared around lunch time so I could sit with Mary, chat, and feed her lunch. I decided Bette Davis' quote was right on the money given what I observed today. The dining room was filled with residents today and unfortunately many of them are not only physically impaired but also cognitively impaired. Some of them scream, talk to themselves, and from an outsider's perspective just look pathetic. The pathetic part is most of these residents are not as lucky as Mary. Many of them do not have regular visits from family members and friends.

As I sat there feeding Mary, I looked around in a sea of wheelchairs and wondered, what were these people like when they were younger? At one time they were active, moved around like me, conversed, and were members of our society. It is a humbling reality to know what can happen to someone when they age. This reality is not new to me, since I have been around older adults all my life, lived with my maternal grandmother, and also watched her deal with the aftermath of a devastating stroke. Yet it is humbling to stop and think that anyone of these adults in a wheelchair could be me. Despite this sobering environment, there were moments of true comedy. Some of the residents are indeed cognitively intact, and not unlike watching teenagers, these residents also form cliques. The cognitively intact clique has quite a lot of commentary to dish out regarding the residents who are screaming, drooling, and moving their wheelchairs around in repetitive motions. Their intention is not to be mean or to pick on their fellow residents, but I truly believe the critiques and commentary help them normalize their reactions to living in an institution. 

As I was sitting next to Mary, her table mate started to chat with me. Mary's tablemate was one of the cognitively intact residents. Apparently she had been observing me while helping Mary and she let me know that she thought I had incredible patience and wanted to know who I was. When I told her that Mary is my friend, she said that Mary was lucky to have a friend like me. She said most people do not make the time to come and visit, especially friends. This woman said the keyword, or my hot button..... TIME! We both agreed that we live in such a fast paced world, there is no time for anything. Yet when will the right time be? Tomorrow??? I learned when Mattie was diagnosed with cancer and through his death that time connecting with others is vital. Which is why, if someone asks me for help or to talk, I make the time. It is true that Mary may not remember that I visited today, but the bottom line is, I do.

I learned about this woman's life history today over lunch and then I explained to her that Mary and I met each other in December of 2008. When I told her that Mary lost a son to cancer, and so did I, her response was basically that we all need someone who understands us and fortunately Mary found me. Very sweet!

Later this evening, I had the pleasure of being interviewed by a reporter for The Connection Newspapers. She wanted to do a story on Mattie, Mattie Miracle, and the Walk. We chatted for 40 minutes and she was an absolute delight to share our story with. In fact, she told me she has been reading the blog and what the Foundation is doing, and basically she is tired from just thinking about it. That had me laughing! She wanted to know how we do it? An excellent question, but we both knew the answer is...... MATTIE! When the web link comes out to the article, I will post it on the blog.

No comments: