The Giving Tree

9 February 2012

The ´Giving Tree Kids´ Tyler, Josh, Brandon and Maddie

Last week, our awesome cancer fightin´ kids met another awesome fighter to give the ´Giving Tree´ to.  Josh has been fighting osteosarcoma for about four years now, and is another one of the bravest kids I know.  Brandon, Maddie, Tyler, and a couple of us ´moms´ loaded the truck up with the tree and drove up to Morgan to find our new friend.  It has been so fun to watch these soon as they get together, they are instantly friends.  It felt like we all had known each other for years.  The kids sat on the couch at Josh´s house and talked and laughed and compared chemo stories…so fun for us to listen to!  We will forever be indebted to and will miss Dylan for his unselfish gift of the tree.  His gift has brought joy to five other cancer fighters, and given these kids another friend to share things that they probably wouldn´t and couldn´t share with their other friends.  We love you Shaw Family!

Tyler has been feeling pretty well this last week or so.  He has some good and bad days, but generally more good than bad…We are enjoying the good ones, and just putting one foot in front of the other on the ´not so good´ ones.

Last night I went to Tyler´s SEOP..where the ninth-graders register for high school.  When I walked in, they handed me a packet of school work and tests Tyler had done in the last year.  There were a bunch of papers from eighth grade when they all participated in ´Reality Town´, a day where they get to choose a career, and basically live an adult life for the day.  They get a job, salary, wife and kids, and oh yeah, the bills, and have to make choices for their life.  It´s a great reality check for these kids.  I read something Tyler had filled out called ´My Life Path´.  As I sat in that room and read what he wrote that his ´life path´was, according to him as an eight-grader, I could feel palpable sadness overwhelming me.  I thought I was going to need to leave the room.  Luckily, Tyler wasn´t with me in that meeting.  I thought of what he, along with our family was thinking about and doing when ´Reality Town´was happening last year.  I think they had this about two weeks before Tyler was diagnosed.  We were all just going along with our lives, hustling and hurrying to the next stop along the way.  The things that were so important, to Tyler and to us, seem so unimportant now.  Interesting how life changes…the rest of the papers in the file were not completed, because Tyler had missed the rest of the school year.  My emotions were so close to the surface as I sat through the rest of that presentation.  I was glad I didn´t know anyone in there, and that no one wanted to talk to me!!!

When it came time to actually register, in walks Tyler, all smiles as usual.  He shuffled through the papers that I had, completely unphased.  I realized at that point, that if it isn´t going to affect Tyler in a negative way, I cannot let it get to me like that.  My sweet friend Megan, who is an amazingly positive person, AND a stage four cancer survivor, shared this quote yesterday.  I loved it, and wanted to share it here.

¨Happiness is an attitude.  We either make ourselves miserable, or happy and strong.  The amount of work is the same.¨- Francesca Reigler

Isn´t that so true…the amount of work is the same.  Sometimes I feel like it´s a lot of work to make myself happy, but it´s also a lot of work to stay miserable all of the time.  I think, like Tyler, the choice to use that much work might as well be made to make me happy.  Isn´t that what it´s all about?



Comments are closed.