True Warriors

22 October 2012

   I said I would post soon about our latest Giving Tree – the story will both break and warm your heart.  I belong to a blog with a special group of women who are all mothers of cancer-fighting cuties.  Even though my cancer fighter is not here, I still like to get on the blog occasionally and see how these sweet children, most of whom I have never met – only read about – are doing.  It’s crazy, because I love each of these kids, know them by name, and worry about them each time their mother posts about an upcoming scan, an emergency admit because of a fever, an unexplained pain etc.  I try to get off the blog, because it sometimes puts me in such a sad mood, but I feel such a connection to these kids.

  A few weeks ago, I read about a sweet little boy from Wyoming who has been fighting leukemia and is in treatment at Primary Children’s Medical Center.  His name is Hunter, and his mother was here with him, while his father was back home in Wyoming taking care of his big brother, Buster.  Hunter’s mother unexpectedly passed away of a heart attack on September 18th while in Salt Lake with him.  When I read about her, my heart was broken for this amazing boy and the pain and confusion he must have been feeling.  My mind was on him constantly the next few weeks.  Only three weeks later, I read on the blog that Hunter’s cancer had returned, even after a bone marrow transplant, and there was nothing more the doctors could do to save his life.  They were suggesting to Hunter’s father that he take him home and live out the time he had left in the love and company of friends and family.  My heart was broken.  I knew that conversation – I knew those words.  But Hunter had lost his mother just three weeks earlier, and his father had just buried his wife and was now facing doing the same thing with his son. 

   I called Tiffany, another amazing mother of a cancer-fighting warrior, Tristan.  I have watched Tristan for months and have loved this boy and his spirit from afar, only meeting him a few months ago.  Tristan is another one of my heroes – smiling through things that most kids, or adults for that matter, will never experience.  Tristan lost his leg a few months ago to Ewing Sarcoma.  The first time I read about Tristan, it was with a picture of him insisting on walking, not riding the gurney to the operating room.  Tristan would make this last walk on that leg himself.  I was smitten – this boy had a spirit like Tyler!

   Tristan wanted to help Hunter and his family, so Tiffany and I began the workings of the Giving Tree for him.  People came out of the woodwork to help this boy and his family.  Tristan and Tiffany raised over $1000 themselves for the tree, and we on our side were able to contribute and raise over $450.  Read these sweet words Hunter himself (age 9) wrote on his blog when he learned there was nothing more medically the doctors could do for him:

It hurt me to know that I may not live to be old and experience what my dad and mom did.  I was scared until I had a really good talk with my dad.  I know that my mom will be there to get me, but not until I have had my fun here first.  I have so many things I want to do with my brother and my dad. Dad is going to take me fishing this weekend if the weather is good. I haven’t been fishing for a very long time and I can’t wait.   I know that my Heavenly Father has a plan for me but I hope he will grant me some extra time to do all the things I want to do.

   This boy is nine years old – yet has the wisdom of a grown man.  One thing I see as I meet all these fighters, is the same strength and wisdom.  I have to wonder if they are given glimpses, or maybe just the blessing of peace, knowing that they have completed their mission, just as it was planned to be.  Please keep Hunter, his brother Buster, and his father in your thoughts and prayers.  They need the blessing of strength and comfort to get through what the upcoming future holds for them all. 

Tristan and his brother getting ready to deliver the tree to Hunter

Sweet Hunter and Buster and the Giving Tree

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