September 1 & poof, the summer is over. A new month, a new season but for people like myself, a time to promote my cause. September is Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month when I will post, promote & talk myself silly trying to raise awareness & funds for kids with cancer. I will do events with the charity we started The Honeysuckle Foundation for Children with Cancer, post on social media Bee-Polished our philanthropic awareness nail enamel, & immerse myself into a world of gold, the color of pediatric cancer. September gives me a chance to introduce pediatric cancer awareness to others who don’t know about it because they have never been touched by it. For me it’s personal. We were a pediatric cancer family & my daughter Alicia is our pediatric cancer survivor! Fifteen years off treatment, we have much to be grateful for. While we give thanks everyday, September gives us a chance to shout it from the mountain tops & so we will.
This month is also a time for deep reflection for me. I not only remember the struggles Alicia faced getting through grueling treatment, but the memories of how her cancer impacted others is vivid in my mind. It doesn’t matter if it’s pediatric cancer, Parkinson’s, autism or any other of life’s challenges, living is tough. The unending litany of stress, fear & change of life circumstances, can send us into a tailspin. As we blissfully go through our daily lives we don’t notice the changes happening all around us until there is something so big that we can’t help but notice. I like to think of these challenges as God’s message to us. His way of telling us to get up off our behinds & do something. Don’t be complacent believing your relevance in this world is tied to what car you drive, address you live at or restaurant you eat at. Move beyond yourself & think bigger for the greater good. While we need others in our lives we are really only in control of ourselves & nobody else. We can rally together to help others, but we can only do that when we know who we are & where we want to go. Being a philanthropist was not on my radar when I was a young mother prior to pediatric cancer, neither was being an advocate, author or mentor to others. The many, many challenges I have experienced in my life have taught me invaluable lessons & introduced me to incredible people. The children & families we have helped throughout the years with the Honeysuckle Foundation gives me joy. The people I have met, places I’ve been, the book I wrote, getting remarried & living the life I now lead would never have happened if in 2003 I hadn’t heard those horrific words, ‘your daughter has cancer’. My life & all our lives would be so different if I did nothing other than feel sorry for us. We all face adversity & we all have the potential to be powerful. Now go out ‘live’ your life & use that power to do something awesome!
Share the message, spread the word September is Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month!