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 16, 2017

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Tonight's picture was taken in April of 2009. At his birthday party, which was in the child life playroom of the hospital. Take a look at the birthday card he received from his art therapists! They knew Mattie LOVED roaches, or at least loved the fact that the notion made me sick. I am not sure Mattie ever saw a live roach. Any case, to me this photo is priceless! Look how proud he was to receive this card!

Quote of the day: But remember, boy, that a kind act can sometimes be as powerful as a sword. ~ Rick Riordan

Today I drove to Baltimore, MD with my friend Margy. It was a DAY LONG adventure to visit Children's Hospital at Sinai. In reality the hospital is about 50 miles away, but with DC traffic, things always take longer. To put this in context, it took us about two hours to drive home.

Mattie Miracle launched its second snack and item cart today. Our first cart is at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and now our second cart is in Maryland. 
Pictured here are Kristen (Child Life Specialist), Dr. Aziza Shad (Chief of Pediatrics), me, Laura (Child Life Coordinator), and Kelly (Child Life Specialist)

When Mattie was dying, Dr. Shad was the attending physician on call at MedStar Georgetown. Even though she wasn't Mattie's oncologist, Peter and I had many opportunities to interact with Aziza and of course I think you learn a lot about a person over the death of your child. Dr. Shad had to make a tough call about Mattie's death. His body was dying but his will did not want to die. Mattie was in agonizing pain and his room and bed looked like a war zone filled with syringes of pain meds. These syringes were given on top of the ones he was already getting through steady IV. Needless to say, Mattie had to be placed into a coma with propofol to die. It is a moment in time I will never forget, regardless of the number of years that go by. 

When Dr. Shad moved from MedStar Georgetown to Sinai Hospital, we decided to continue our support of our work. So we started by donating a snack/item cart. 

The cart was a huge hit today. The hospital gave us permission to post several photos of children we met along our journey today. Typically I do not like to feature children on our blog or website, because I am sensitive to their illness and do not want to highlight our accomplishments by exploiting a child's hardship and struggles.

I have made an exception to my rule today, because I could try to tell you there were smiles and happiness over the cart, but sometimes a picture says it all!
This fellow was priceless! As were all the children we met today. This cutie is five, and managed to deal with all of us transcending onto the clinic and hovering around. He was coloring in a Shamrock for St. Patrick's day and he and his mom were thrilled to get some items from the cart. 

I am not sure why meeting all the children and teens today impacted me so. As Margy said.... we met many 7 year olds today. The age Mattie was at when he died. Her comment resonated with me because it is hard not to see Mattie in these little ones.  

Julien was wearing a hat that said... cancer can't beat me. I think what struck me about the children I met today was their incredible strength, courage, and overall positive 'can do' attitude. Which truly is remarkable. 

So many of their faces remain with me tonight, because the child life staff brought us into every room and gave us an opportunity to talk with the children and parents. We weren't only delivering treats, but connecting with people. Which is what I love best. 
After visiting the outpatient clinic, we went to visit the inpatient pediatric units. This hospital is designed beautifully, with every room and detail thought through to make a family comfortable. 
This is Daniel. He had just undergone a painful procedure. But when he came out to see the cart and receive a star balloon from us, his demeanor changed. It is wonderful to be able to personally see the difference a snack can make. 
This cutie is Graham. He was also unforgettable. You can see in the lower left hand corner of his bed all the goodies he picked out for himself and his parents. He has the sweetest smile and I asked him if I could capture it!
After touring the outpatient clinic, the inpatient units, and the pediatric ER, Margy and I went to lunch with Dr. Shad. 
Margy and I in front of the sea creature sculpture as you enter the children's hospital!

1 comment:

Margy Jost said...

Vicki, Today was priceless to me! Having the opportunity to see the cart in action, witnessing the children's response to the treats and having the chance to interact with the children, we visited was very special!!! Each child left an impression, their mark on my day. Together, we agree on the importance of a good Psychossocial support system. I saw today how well the magic of the Mattie Miracle Cart contributes to spreading joy to kids in treatment.

My friend Kimber talked often about the warm hearted, compassionate, very smart, Dr. Shad. To meet her today, give her a hug was a visit from Kimber!