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

October 10, 2016

Monday, October 10, 2016

Monday, October 10, 2016

Tonight's picture was taken in October of 2003. Mattie was a year and a half old and posing in front of his enormous play pen. This gated area practically took up both our dining and living rooms. But there were all sorts of interesting things to play with inside. My goal was to try to teach Mattie to play independently. But Mattie always found a way to include me or Peter.... he preferred it that way. 

Quote of the day: The only way out of the labyrinth of suffering is to forgive.  John Green

Mattie Miracle spoke with another large hospital today in the area about starting a snack cart there. One of our corporate sponsors has offered to fund another cart, so I am trying to make this happen. It was funny. When I spoke to the hospital they had great concerns about ALL the candy on the Georgetown cart. They thought the cart was meant for patients, and explained that they like to limit their patients' sugar intake. I then explained the psychosocial purpose of the cart, which is to help provide items to families caring for children with life threatening illnesses. I joked with them about the fact that the last thing a parent wants to see when up all night is a granola bar. You want sugar, in the form of candy! They then got the concept. It is a concept that few really think about since most organizations truly focus only on the patient. But there is a whole family system impacted by one diagnosis. So negotiations are underway. 

Later today, I went onto Facebook. I have a love/hate relationship with Facebook and truly try NOT to spend time on it. Besides inane information, there is also information that can depress you. Whether we are talking about social/political commentary or simply the hundreds of photos of families with children. Yet I logged onto Facebook and noticed that one of our friends in cancer posted this comment:

It seems clear to me that a wounded heart is equally capable of embracing or rejecting compassion, but a calloused one is inclined to deliberately resent it. The question I find myself asking is, how the hell did they get so far apart from one another if both started on the same path? Maybe there is no definitive answer.

I tried to answer this question, because I assumed he was asking it in the context of childhood cancer. How can one reject compassion? Actually I think it is rather easy given one's life experiences and circumstances. Many of us who lost a child can become hardened or even calloused. After all, life did not show our child compassion, so why should we return the favor. I have to admit that there are times I can cycle in and out of this stance. For the most part I always aim for compassion, but when anger and hostility set in (and they can with me), I will shut down and despite the compassionate responses I may hear, they get filtered out. The important thing however, is to be aware of these feelings and when you can't be, to be open to those you trust to hear their insights about your behavior. 

But beyond the context of childhood cancer, there are many reasons why we reject compassion because we may not have experienced it ourselves or the fear of failure. As tonight's quote points out, we may live in a labyrinth of suffering because we can't forgive, and the forgiveness I am referring to is of one's self. When things don't go as planned or when life takes you down a road you never thought you would have to face, failure can ensue. You can feel responsible for the outcomes you see and as such you turn that failure, anger, and bitterness internally. That can produce quite an effective wall, that is impenetrable to compassion and kindness. Also to receive compassion means that you are open to feelings and trust that letting someone in is the safe thing to do. However, unfortunately we sometimes learn the hard way that trusting others can lead to more pain and suffering, therefore we become closed off from human interactions for protection but at the same time become disconnected from the beauty that can also result. 

I am not sure I answered his dilemma, but as I told him I was sharing my insights from my own experiences. He is writing from the view point of trying to give compassion to others, and his efforts have been rejected. The question I have is..... if your compassionate acts are rejected or ignored, will this prevent you from offering such kindness to others? My answer is.... I HOPE NOT! 

1 comment:

Margy Jost said...


While I want to spend more time thinking about the context of this post, I had to comment on the beautiful picture of Mattie. He was such a lovely child. I can see why and how, he would be able to engage you & Peter, even as you taught independent play. I could have hug him through the picture.

More on this post as I am actually very interested in this topic.