Many of you have commented on the appeal letter you received recently from Rainbow Babies’ & Children’s that was written by my mother. For some unknown reason, ours has yet to arrive in the mail but I finally saw the finished product when we went in today for labs.

It features a one-and-a-half page letter, along with an insert with the following photos:

Her letter, which was revised to fit a more formulaic template, originally started out with, “Of course, I wish my grandson didn’t have cancer.”  She went on to say all the things she wishes were not as they are: bald Austin hooked to an IV pole to receive daily chemotherapy, her visits to hold him each afternoon that we’re in-patient, her worries as she mothers a child who worries and mothers a child with cancer.

But if this is our reality, she goes on to say, then at least we have Rainbow.  After describing the extremely personal and expert care we receive from Austin’s oncologist, she continues, “I am grateful every day for the nurses who stay focused, positive and supportive while handling situations that require judgment, quickness and courage. I am grateful for the people who call Austin by name each day as they come in to mop his floor or collect his trash. I am grateful to be wished a nice day by every single staff person I encounter. I am grateful that Austin can jump on his bed and play with his little race cars — despite that darn IV pole. And on those occasions when he climbs into my lap and succumbs to a nap, I sit as still as I can for two or three hours if need be, so as not to shorten by one minute the joy of having him in my arms, still alive and with a hopeful future.”

There is much we wish were not as it is. But there is much we are thankful is just as it is.