It's been a month or so since I've written about Sophia. For a chunk of that time, she was at Seattle Children's Hospital being treated for the side-effects of chemo. Today we're celebrating the fact that she's only got ONE more chemotherapy session and then, except for quarterly scans to evaluate for recurrence, she'll be done with it. She and her mother Stacey can really start gearing up for their Hawaii trip. If any two people have earned a vacation, it's Sophia and Stacey.
(Doesn't she look awesome with her do-rag & tatt?)
I asked Stacey to share a few words on how things are going in Sophia's world...
Although when you're in my shoes you hate to jinx something, I am pleased to say that Sophia is tolerating her second to last chemo well! As of last Wednesday, she has one remaining treatment to go(likely 2 weeks from now) and we can, God willing, put this cancer crap behind us.
I recall an emergency room Dr. once say as he was looking at the sign on her chart that said 18 of 18(she has 18 huge charts!) "Man, she has been through a lot" I responded quickly with, "I don't keep a tally, I just keep track". At that moment I realized the importance of that statement. See, if I kept a tally, it would not be fair to her, and it would be too much for me. She deserves to wake each day and receive the benefit of the doubt. A fresh start to prove just how strong she is, not some ongoing reminder of times of trial or weakness.
Miss Sophia Grace is a kid you don't want to meet in a dark alley. She can, and will, take you down! Thank you to all who have thought of, prayed for, donated to, smiled at, and pondered the power of the Soph. Please know that it is YOU who gives ME the strength to empower HER to live to her fullest. For that we are both eternally grateful.
Living life to the fullest...that's something we all could do a little more of. One thing that has impressed me since the day Sophia was born is that Stacey has always referred to her problems as "differences", not "disabilities". She has always tried to give Sophia Grace experiences that support and maximize who she is. Obviously that's what every parent wants to do, but when you're accruing 18 thick medical charts in the process, you can imagine the difficulty that Stacey has faced.
Many of you who are reading this have donated to Team Sophia, helping Stacey with a trip to Hawaii to visit Grandma and Grandpa. It's been humbling to see how generous people can be, and I sincerely thank every one of you who has donated or said a prayer on Sophia's behalf.
Today I'm going to do something a little different. The video below was created by the staff at Seattle Children's hospital. It shows their heme-onc staff and patients performing the Kelly Clarkson song "Stronger". I'm going to take half of all the money donated to Team Sophia as a result of this post and send it to the SCH Foundation, earmarked for their heme-onc floor. I'm a 20+ year employee of Children's, and I can't watch this video without bawling like a baby. If you can kick in the cost of a fancy coffee beverage, you'll be helping Sophia and Stacey with their Hawaiian vacation AND helping the kids at Seattle Children's.