Courage for Kennedy – Journal

February 21, 2006

And the World Keeps Turning…

Category: Family,Fundraisers,Gratitude,Treatment – Melenie – 8:04 pm

Kennedy had physical therapy today and it went really well. She got her new orthopedic braces and they are helping her so much. The bad part?? No shoes fit over them so we had to buy sandals until we can go down to Corvallis to meet with the elves (I really think they are angels!) and have some shoes made for Kennedy. She had a great time and moved with a lot more confidence. She also had her home health nurse come out for a nutrition assessment…the insurance is precertifying nutrition but we have heard this song and dance before. They said if we do the assessment they will start paying…I won’t hold my breath. They have paid for NOTHING so far despite the fact that there have been life and death decisions to be made.

I also bought Kennedy the most beautiful pink Easter dress, hat and purse. I haven’t gone all out since her 1st Easter but it is a way for me to hold on to hope for the next 2 months as we revisit the worst part of our journey. I am determined that she will be healthy and thriving for Easter Sunday and will look dazzling in her new dress. Easter will be the perfect day of celebration…the day Jesus beat the devil and gave us all everlasting life. The day the King cheated death.

Thank you so much to my cousin, Amanda for sending me all the wonderful products to return my hands to their pre-diaper days and all the pampering supplies! What a tremendous blessing this is to me and I can’t possibly thank her enough. They smell wonderful and I appreciate not only the goodies but also all of the instructions to go along with them. When Kennedy recovers, we would love to visit all of you in beautiful Calgary, Canada. We are huge rodeo fans and hope to join you for the Calgary Stampede.

The bracelets are in!!!! Get yours now while supplies last!!! Just e-mail us if you would like some of your own or would like to sale some for Kennedy. They are $4 each or 3 for $10!! They come in 5 beautiful colors! They say “COURAGE4KENNEDY” on the front and Leukemia Warrior inside.

I had seen this on Julianna’s website ( but saw it again after Josh’s mom posted it there. Many of us, even those not currently receiving chemo, are going through a rough time with cancer and are finding inspiration from each other. Many, many parents suffer post-traumatic stress disorder after it is all over and have a hard time recovering emotionally from walking this journey with their children…sometimes more so than the kids-especially if they are little. Please pray for parents as they walk along side their fighting warriors. Our gut check moment was this past Christmas which is just now really starting to hit us.

“When our family history is written, this will be our watershed moment. Our collective gut check. It was the death of the last of our innocence, and the birth of our resolve. cancer is a bitch. Not only does it systematically dismantle your physical health, but it will gladly steal as much of your emotional and psychological well being as you allow. And if you are reading this and you are just starting down your own cancer path, pay very close attention, because I just typed the five most important words in my entire two and a half years of cancer hell…


It can take away your health or your hair, but cancer doesn’t automatically take away your hope, you allow it to. It doesn’t take away your dignity, you allow it to. And it damn well has no business taking away your resolve, unless you allow it to. Every aspect of your coping is yours to control. When you don’t make the conscious decision to apply that control, you are making the unconscious decision to forfeit that control to cancer. You may not even realize that you are doing it, but no decision is still a decision, but by omission. And cancer will gladly and greedily take as much as you allow it to.

Don’t let it! Stare your demon square in the eye and yell “NO!� Make the conscious decision to fight cancer on each and every front. Physically. Emotionally. Psychologically. Spiritually. Any ‘ally’ you can think of, draw your line in the sand and spit in cancer’s face! I know first hand how difficult it is to do, and I in no way mean to trivialize what is undoubtedly the defining challenge of our entire lives. But you have to do it, man, you just have to. You and the wonderful people that love you deserve nothing less. Do all the things that make life the beautiful commodity that it is. Love like it’s Valentine’s Day every day. Laugh like you’re Chris Rock’s drinking buddy.

Not because of cancer, but despite it.
Julianna’s dad

P.S. – and don’t ever let me catch you capitalizing the word ‘cancer’! Remember, it doesn’t respect you, so don’t respect it.”

“If Children have the ability to ignore odds and percentages, then maybe we can all learn from them. When you think about it, what other chance is there but to HOPE? We have two options, medically and emotionally: give up, or FIGHT LIKE HELL”.

-Lance Armstrong

“It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.�
– Mark Twain

Kennedy: Gaelic meaning “hard headed warrior!!”

Here’s to fighting the good fight,

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