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

March 27, 2017

Monday, March 27, 2017

Monday, March 27, 2017

Tonight's picture was taken in May of 2002. Mattie was about a month old. If you look in the background of this photo, you will see Patches, our calico. Patches was NEVER far from her family and kept a close eye on all of us. This photo captures the sleepy/dreamy look Mattie had after a bottle. A sight I will never forget. 

Quote of the day: Two thirds of cancers are unavoidable even if you live a healthy life, a study has shown. ~ UK Telegraph

My mom sent me an article in the UK Telegraph this weekend. The title alone catches you.... Two thirds of cancers are unavoidable even if you live a healthy life study finds. As adults we are constantly told that what we eat, our lifestyle, and what we are exposed to greatly influences our chances of getting cancer. Which fits our society's mindset.... meaning that we are in control of our own destiny and what happens to us. But here is the sad fact, a fact that I learned in 2008 (WITHOUT needing a study!!!) is that so much of our health is OUT OF OUR CONTROL. This study simply confirms the reality.  

Here is an excerpt from the article below that summarizes the message.......

The vast majority of cancers are probably down to unlucky defects in replicating DNA that occur out of the blue, they suggest. But it is not as well-known that each time a normal cell divides and copies its DNA to produce two new cells, it makes multiple mistakes. These copying mistakes are a potent source of cancer mutations that historically have been scientifically undervalued, and this new work provides the first estimate of the fraction of mutations caused by these mistakes.

The research, published in the journal Science, indicates that almost two-thirds of cancer-causing mutations are due to DNA copying errors. The discovery helps explain why cancer often strikes people who follow all the rules of healthy living and have no family history of the disease. Cancers triggered by copying errors could occur no matter how perfect the environment, according to co-author Dr Bert Vogelstein, also from the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center. In some cancer types, such as those affecting the prostate, brain and bone, more than 95% of the harmful mutations were due to random DNA copying errors.

When I read that 95% of bone cancers (the type of cancer Mattie had) occur because of random DNA copying errors, how should this make me feel? Should this make me breathe a sigh of relief! Knowing that as his mom I did not contribute to the development of this disease? Frankly this knowledge just makes me shake my head even further, knowing that scientists are looking for the elusive "cure" for childhood cancer. A solution that seems very challenging to produce given that harmful mutations can arise anywhere and at any time. How do you design DRUGS to manage that? 

Now given all that was stated in this article, the last paragraph of the article truly gets me. After explaining the happenstance of these mutations, Professor Mel Greaves, director of the Centre for Evolution and Cancer at The Institute of Cancer Research in London than caveats the data by saying.......

Even if, as this study suggests, most individual cancer mutations are due to random chance, the researchers admit that the cancers they cause may still be preventable. We have good evidence to show that cancer is caused by a complex mix of environmental exposures, inherited risk, and random chance.

Are you confused yet? Which is it..... random mutations or the environment? Certainly we know in children it isn't the environment or inherited risk. That is one thing that the research (other research, not this study) seems to indicate, but to me this statement is more applicable to the adult world and that is where the message is directed. After all, we can't have adults walking around with the reality that they have NO CONTROL over their long term health and prognosis. Not a reality doctors can accept either by the way. But from someone who has lost a child to cancer, it is the REALITY and it truly is quite frightening!

Two thirds of cancers are unavoidable even if you live a healthy life, study finds:

1 comment:

Margy Jost said...

Vicki, As a society, we will always look for answers & reasons that Cancer occurs. People will believe what fits their mindset and life. However, while the articles ending seems to refute the rest of the article, I will always believe the majority of Cancers occur randomly. This is hard to accept because we are a controlling society. However, as you know first hand, a Cancer diagnosis takes away all your control.
Articles that list ways to avoid a Cancer diagnosis are so misleading, dangerous and just plain nasty for Parents whose child has Cancer. I can't count the number of times parents worried that the hot digs, they gave their child caused their Child's Cancer! There is no proof of that or many of the other theories. However, they are guilt inducing to the parents of children in treatment.
The very sad, disheartening truth is a diagnosis of Cancer is random, mostly, but especially in the Pediatric World. The disheartening part of this is if we truly did know what caused it, the possibility of a cure could be on the horizon.
The danger of all articles about how Cancer starts put people in a complacent place to not follow up with persistent complaints. In the Pediatric World, Pediatricians need to act quicker. All too often, they look for a simple solution instead of doing a CBC, looking for clues.
I can't see how any article woukd make a pediatric Oncology family feel better. They are already fighting the horrible disease with their child! Cancer happens - I wish more than anything they would discover cures!