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: www.mattiemiracle.com 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

August 22, 2016

Monday, August 22, 2016

Monday, August 22, 2016

Tonight's picture was taken in August of 2004. We took Mattie to the arboretum in Arcadia, CA that day. This was one of Mattie's favorite places to go for many reasons. First Mattie thrived in big outdoor spaces, and second Mattie loved all the wildlife at the park. Especially the peacocks. Peacocks roam freely at the park and Mattie got a kick out of watching them walk, fly into the trees, and of course the dance they used to do when fluffing out their tail feathers.


Quote of the day: Victory belongs to the most persevering. ~ Napoleon Bonaparte

Some times I search through Google to see what turns up regarding Mattie Miracle. I do this for multiple reasons. For example, I want to make sure no one is posting things representing the Foundation without our permission and at other times I am just searching to see different photos of Mattie. Like taking a walk down memory lane. Naturally I have these photos on my computer, but it is special to see them on line. I found this series of photos taken by the Washington Post. These photos were taken shortly after Mattie died. As you can see this photo featured some of Mattie's Lego creations. Legos were very important to us because they served as our main form of therapy while Mattie was battling cancer. The ironic part about this is all of these Lego structures remain assembled and on display in our living room.

I am so glad the newspaper captured some of the chaos we were living in. Our home honestly looked like an episode of Hoarders. Not something I was proud of, given that prior to cancer I kept things neat and organized.

Yet Mattie was given many gifts of all sorts while battling cancer. Some were handed directly to him and others were mailed to him. Not WEEKLY, but daily. Imagine taking in MANY things each and year day for over a year and NOT having the time to organize it or remove certain items to make room for the new ones. The intake was greater than I knew how to process and naturally given that Mattie was so ill, clean up was NOT important. As a results, there were PILES, upon PILES everywhere in our home. Mattie's room became UNUSABLE after he died because there was stuff everywhere. You couldn't see the floor! It took me a long time to contend with this hoard of items. Let's try years!


From this angle, you can see how high some of the piles were. I neither had the energy or the where with all to contend with any of Mattie's things. Therefore they just sat undisturbed for years. As if I was waiting for him to return to use them. My brain just couldn't process he wasn't coming back.
Then in 2013, only three years ago, I started slowly cleaning out the room (this is what it began to look like once cleaned). I just felt as if I had to because the room wasn't representing Mattie's memory well. If I had a huge home, I honestly think I would have left things like they were probably indefinitely. But given our limited space, I felt that I had to deal with this room, the piles and hoard every where, and finally transform the space back to being useable and a space that honored Mattie. I can assure you that this process was very painful, labor intensive, and I did it alone. People were not lining up at my doorstep to help with this! Not like after the first year after Mattie died. That first year is hard, but frankly you are too numb and in a daze to know what is really happening. It is all the years after the first where emotional support is greatly needed.

Literally as I was cleaning out Mattie's room, the number of garbage bags just piled up. That Fall I donated over 60 garbage bags full of items to Goodwill.
Once the room was cleaned out, Peter and I began painting Mattie's room. We transformed it from an ivory color to a sunny orangey peach color. In line with Mattie Miracle colors, because Mattie's room was being transformed into my Foundation office.






At one time, Mattie had books on these shelves. I donated many of Mattie's books, except for his very favorite ones. Then I got bins for each of his shelves and now use them to store Foundation paperwork and of course to highlight Mattie's artistic creations.
In December 2015, the Washington Post came back into our home to interview us. The room LOOKED very different from the hoard they saw years before. Now the room is filled with all sorts of visual memories of Mattie.
I found this photo through Google tonight. It features many of the items from our VERY first Foundation Walk in May of 2010. The beautiful cards in the upper left hand corner feature Mattie's Mr. Sun painting on the cover. I still have some of these cards and LOVE them. Mattie created his Mr. Sun painting with his art teacher in school. This painting served as our model for our Foundation's logo.

Our teenager friend (at the time), Isabel, made these wonderful Foundation magnets for us and she sold them at our Walk and gave us 100% of the proceeds.
T-shirts from our Walks through the years. This is when we used to have themed walks..... Love of Family, Faces of Hope, etc.
I found this photo on Google tonight and it featured Mattie Miracle's Whole Foods Day in Alexandria. I will never forget that day in 2012 because so many of our supporters came to visit us and the store gave Mattie Miracle 5% of all sale proceeds that day!

 

1 comment:

Margy Jost said...

Vicki,
I love Mattie's room! It is important, you have pictures of it both from the past and from now. I thoughtfully looked at each photo that belonged to a little boy who loved so many things. Thanks for posting each picture!