The Sweetest 16th Birthday Ever

Kayla age 7 and Allison age 3.

Kayla age 7 and Allison age 3.

When I turned 16-years-old (a life time ago), I had certain expectations.  My first and most important one was to get my driver’s license.  The second one was to wake up on the morning of my birthday and look outside to see a brand new candy apple red Corvette with a giant bow on the hood parked in the drive way.  However, only 1 of the 2 expectations was met on that day; I got my license and the Corvette just remained in my dreams.  My daughter, Allison, has very different plans for her upcoming 16th birthday.  She wants to give to other’s instead of receiving gifts for herself.  Allison spent many days and nights in the hospital with Kayla while she was receiving treatment for cancer.  She saw all of the families that were so scared for fear of losing their sick child.  So, she chose to reach out to the families who are currently at Egleston and give them donations of laundry supplies, blankets, pillows, socks, snacks and more to help ease their hospital stay.  I only wish I had been unselfish like her when I was 16 instead of just thinking about myself.  But, she continues to amaze me with her generosity and kindness for other’s.  

Allison's locks of love

Allison’s locks of love

Several months ago, Allison cut 10 inches off of her hair and donated it to Locks of Love  http://www.locksoflove.org/ .  This non-profit organization provides hair pieces to children with long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis.  I am so proud of Allison and her gracious and compassionate heart.  And, my life has been truly blessed with my 3 beautiful daughters.

The following letter was written by Allison:

Dear family and friends,                                                                                                                                                       

                It’s hard to believe that it has already been over two years since my sister, Kayla, passed away from Leukemia and she was going to be 20-years-old on Christmas Eve 2012. My family has gone through a lot since Kayla passed away, but we have all come a lot closer together. Right after Kayla passed away, I had no idea how I was going to overcome such trauma and heartache from losing my older sister. Since time has passed, I have become more mature and understanding when it comes to difficult times, I have learned to enjoy the little things in life and now I see how truly blessed I am.

            There are a lot of charities and foundations that are raising money for research and finding a cure. No one knows how long or when it will be when we find a cure for cancer, but in the mean time families are in desperate need of different items while they are living at the hospital with their child. Since my 16th birthday is coming up soon, I thought it would be a fantastic idea to gather up items that I can take on the day of my birthday, which is January 15th. Here is a list of items that I have come up with that you can donate.

Laundry detergent, Laundry Baskets

Blankets, Sheets, Pillows

Socks, Slippers

Snacks (chips, cookies, crackers)

Drinks (water, Gatorade, Coke)

Egg crate to use as cushion (the couches in the patient’s room are very uncomfortable for the families to sleep on)

Notebooks, pens

Gas gift cards (families use a lot of gas getting to and from the hospital)

     Since this is very short notice, gift cards to Wal-Mart, Target, and Dollar General ETC. would be best. All of these items have to be BRAND NEW. The hospital will not take used items. All of these items will be going to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta-Egleston. This is the same hospital where Kayla received her treatment and chemo.

      If you would like to help, my email address is allisonjones1507@yahoo.com. I will be taking these items on the day of my birthday (January 15, 2013) to the hospital. Thank you for your kindness and generosity and for making helping these families!

      Love, Allison

               ac (26)

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About MomMinus1

Welcome to my blog, momminus1 (mom minus one). I am a mother of three beautiful girls, Kayla 17, Allison 13 and Ashley 5. One of my daughters recently became an angel; Kayla passed away on September 22, 2010 due to complications from AML leukemia. She was diagnosed on July 3, 2010. She endured harsh chemotherapy treatments, hair loss, rare and painful skin disorders, horrible stomach infections, weakness, loss of appetite, depression, anxiety and fear. From the time she was diagnosed until the day she died it was just 81 days..... A short, but, horrific battle with cancer. I am always asked, "How are you doing? What can I do for you? How are your two girls doing?" At times, these are tough questions to answer. And, I express myself best when I write. Writing is so helpful and therapeutic for me. Maybe I can answer these questions for those that are concerned about us. Maybe I can help another mom that might wake up tomorrow and find out that their child is diagnosed with cancer. Maybe there is a mom somewhere, like me, that just lost a child to cancer and is searching the web for answers. She might be thinking, "Is there anyone out there that understands what I'm going through?" I understand. I am grieving. I am in pain. I have a big piece of my heart that is now gone.....I would love your feedback about my blog, too. Thanks for reading!
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6 Responses to The Sweetest 16th Birthday Ever

  1. I think these losses change the core of children who experience them… I can see the change in my 5 year old since her big sister Maddie died last February… shes kinder, more caring and so different…
    What an awesome 16 year old you have :)… she’s going to do big things in life…

    • MomMinus1 says:

      The loss of Kayla has absolutely changed my girls. They are so much stronger than I am. They appreciate everything in life. I’m so thankful for my children. I know you are so grateful for all of your girls. You have a beautiful blog, too!

  2. Lisa Ruprecht says:

    I lost my beautiful 20 year old son just 7 weeks and 5 days ago to cancer ( rhabdomyascoma )and I just don’t know how to live without him. He was my baby boy ( I have 4 older daughters ), the last one living at home and my pride and joy. How do you live without them.

    • MomMinus1 says:

      Lisa…..I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of your son. It is just not fair that our children had to endure cancer and then not survive. You will find your strength through your 4 girls. My children are what get me out of bed each day….And, a lot of daily prayer. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers…..

      Amber

  3. thecookiegal says:

    how wonderful and unselfish of your daughter!! I know that when my son was in treatment, it was the little things like you listed that meant SO much to us!!

    Nancy
    Mom to Angel Alexander the Great 6/29/09-4/1/2011 – neuoblastoma

    http://thecookiegal.wordpress.com/

    • MomMinus1 says:

      Nancy….You are so correct about the little things that helped while our children were in the hospital. I’m so proud of my daughter and her decision to think about these families instead of herself. The world needs more kids like her……Please feel free to contact me anytime if you need someone to talk to. I’d love to hear more about your Alexander the Great!

      Amber

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