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

April 26, 2016

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Tuesday, April 26, 2016 -- Mattie died 345 weeks ago today.

Tonight's picture was taken in May of 2008 during Grandparents day at Mattie's school. This was his first and last grandparents day, which of course at the time we thought we would have many years of them to look forward to! Pictured with Mattie is Leslie, Mattie's kindergarten teacher. Each year when I do my art series at Mattie's school I always see Leslie. In fact I saw her today as I set up for the second lesson tomorrow.  It is hard to believe we have known each other for 9 years and Mattie is no longer part of this equation! 

Quote of the day: It's often said that a traumatic experience early in life marks a person forever, pulls her out of line, saying, "Stay there. Don't move. ~ Jeffrey Eugenides

As I was walking to my physical therapy session today, I passed these glorious roses. Besides the vibrant color hitting you, the fragrance was intoxicating. You don't expect to see this in the middle of the city. But do you see the one ballet pink rose in the center? This truly caught my eye! Why should there be one lone pink in the midst of all this color!? There are no answers but it seemed special to me.

I have been going to physical therapy since March 7. I am now on my 13th session. Is it helping? Yes but I still have issues and the therapist now wants me to see a rheumatologist to get assessed for fibromyalgia. 

I have known several people with fibromyalgia and it is interesting that all my doctors never mentioned this to me. I realize it is one of those rule out diagnoses because there is no test to confirm it. Yet it would explain many of my long term symptoms. When I researched the causes of fibromyalgia I found that it is unknown. However, researchers think a number of factors might be involved. Fibromyalgia can occur on its own, but has also been linked to being exposed to stressful or traumatic events. I did not need to read any further because I immediately got it! I would say my body hasn't been physically the same since Mattie died from cancer. It is like I live with different system failures at various times during the year. 

Fibromyalgia is a disorder that causes aches and pain all over the body. People with fibromyalgia also have "tender points" throughout their bodies. Tender points are specific places on the neck, shoulders, back, hips, arms, and legs that hurt when pressure is put on them. The symptoms are widespread pain, cognitive difficulties, fatigue, sleep issues, emotional issues, and headaches. Naturally with many of the other health issues I contend with, there is no "cure." But it does require alternative lifestyle changes such as being active (I work at a desk all day and sometimes night, especially during fundraising season) and also having less stress. 

Certainly from the outside running Mattie's Foundation may look easy, but it is like running a small business without a staff. If the Foundation does well, it is thanks to us, and if it fails it is thanks to us. That is a great deal of pressure to live with each year, especially when it is tied to the memory of our only child. As spring comes, I always say after the Walk, I will be able to catch my breath. But it never happens, and just like last summer, I already have things piling up on my plate such a coordinating a strategy session with our researchers, writing another book chapter, and the list goes on! All good problems certainly but my body always makes me aware of what I survived with Mattie and anyone who thinks childhood cancer just impacts the child is VERY wrong. 

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