Thursday, October 1, 2009

2 new babies and 1 big pill to swallow

Our friends and family have been blessed with 2 new baby boys over the past 2 weeks. I have a new nephew, Cole Ryan Westerman. Ryan's oldest brother Sean and my amazing sister in law Michelle had him on September 21. They have been trying for much too long for a baby and now they finally have their little miracle. One of my best friends, Jill, also had a third baby on Sunday. This time a boy to add to her family, Levi Alan Gervais. Talyn is so happy to have two new boys to play with and can't wait until they get big enough to wrestle with him.

Even though I am so happy for both families, it also makes me a bit sad. I had always wanted to have 2 kids and it seems like there are a lot of people around me having a baby right now. I am of course thrilled for all of them, but deep down I am also a bit sad. It really hits home that we are not going to be able to have another baby. Writing that down is even hard. I am thrilled to have such an amazing son right now, but can't help but feel a bit saddened that he won't get a sibling. My cancer is fueled by estrogen, which gets increased with pregnancy. But more importantly with Ryan's delicate health, we need to focus on what we have, not what we want.

My Rethink work is continuing to amaze me. We are getting ready for the Romp on October 22 and hoping to raise enough funds to start our next support program in early 2010. I have been doing a small media outreach to get more awareness around the charity in Calgary and with time, it will come.

We went to see the Dalai Lama yesterday as well. He says everything that we already know and so simply. But when he says it, it truly resonates. Why can't this world be filled with peace? Why is the century that I grew up in going to be remembered for violence? Can the next generation change this to instead be remembered for peace? I know it sounds simplistic and there are many complexities in the world, but can't we create a dialogue to try and get past this all? Killing each other just can't be the answer.

We are also pursuing some other options with Ryan's treatments. Our application to get the cancer center to fund his continuing treatment got declined again. It is very frustrating that the treatment that is working so well for him, continues to be declined for coverage because it doesn't work for a greater proportion of people. Just because Avastin isn't something that works for the majority of people, doesn't mean that Ryan shouldn't be covered for it.

Something needs to change in our health care system to allow it to be more personalized. We can't continue to make decisions for drug coverage based on whether a large number of people are responding to it. If we didn't have assistance with paying for this until this point, Ryan might not be with us. How can this be right? And so, we continue to fight the fight that so many people are facing. Hopefully the media will help us.

We all face challenges in life. This last few weeks has continued to show me that we need to enjoy the high's and try not to dwell on the low's. We can each continue to make a difference to others. As the Dalai Lama says "start with self confidance, then you can have inner peace and only then can you show compassion to others".

If you ever ask yourself "How can one person make a difference"? He sure has.

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