Sunday, November 30, 2008

Ways to Help--Part III: Lunch for Life

Our regular holiday season message is


Children's Neuroblastoma Cancer Foundation has launched this year's Lunch for Life. Once again, we are getting into the holiday spirit by asking folks to give up their lunch to help find and fund a cure for neuroblastoma.

Here’s how it works: Each child has his or her own virtual giving tree, and your donations will decorate those trees with ornaments and (ultimately) presents. Every donation you make on Erin's behalf has three effects: 1) her tree receives one ornament for every $5 you donate; 2) every donation generates a Giving Code that gets Erin bonus ornaments if you pass it on to a friend to use; and 3) each ornament creates one entry for that child into the Disney World giveaway. For example, if I give up lunch all week ($5/day) and donate $25 to Erin's tree, she gets 5 ornaments on her tree and 5 contest entries. I also get a Giving Code to pass along. (PLEASE NOTE: Erin's Giving Tree Code is 24730) When a tree is full (500 ornaments), those ornaments transform into a present underneath that tree, and the decoration process begins all over again.

I just visited the link and it took less than a minute to give up my lunch! If you're skeptical, spend some time on the Lunch for Life website. ALL FUNDS raised through Lunch for Life go directly to support neuroblastoma research and initiatives. Erin might not benefit from the research, and it might not save her life, but we hope it will. We want to wipe neuroblastoma off of the face of the earth!

Since we have churned through practically all the non-experimental ways to control Erin's disease, her future depends on research breakthroughs. Making a donation is the best way I can think of to help Erin. Last year, I set my account up to give up lunch once a week, and that was completely painless.

One thing you will notice if you have visited Lunch for Life before, the web page has a new look. More importantly, there are new ways to get involved: in your neighborhood and at work. If you have ever thought about passing it forward, this would be the place to start.

Erin has had the kind of holiday we had hoped for. I can't say that she is completely back to normal, but it is the closest to normal we have experienced in quite a long while. She has not needed pain medicine in over a week (although we ended up giving it to her on a reduced and tapering schedule for a few days because when we stopped it suddenly last weekend she had massive headaches and other physical symptoms. . .for those of you who drink two or three mugs a day, imagine foregoing your coffee habit with no warning). Her appetite recovered just in time for Thanksgiving dinner. I knew she was doing better when she got into the spirit of making ice box cookie dough on Wednesday evening, then moved right on to deviled egg production. She still complains of tiredness most days, but I think a practiced eye can tell she has gradually increased her store of energy.

We have stuck pretty close to home because of the nadir in her counts last week, but we were glad to have a full house on Thanksgiving Day (along with the pleasant company, our guest brought the yummiest collection of Thanksgiving food that we have had in quite some time). We missed Davis desperately, but have now moved into the final three week countdown of his return.

This week promises to return to a fuller schedule. We have four days of radiation left (Erin and I will follow the late/early schedule and spend Monday and Wednesday nights in Houston). Friday is the middle school winter dance, and Saturday is Girl Day at Texas A&M (where middle school girls will spend the day learning about math, science, and engineering options). Next Sunday, Erin will be the acolyte for the second Sunday in Advent.

1 comment:

  1. Congrats Erin I know that today is your last day of Radiation and you and mom should be headed home!!!!!!
    Tracy Ash