Things have been quiet on Everyday Road to Healthy lately and weâ€™ve missed some meat-free Mondays. Itâ€™s actually meâ€¦I should be holding up the fort while Deena takes care of her son, but Iâ€™m honestly having a tough time writing about anything. How can I write about food and races and exercise while Deenaâ€™s son is suffering from this terrible disease called cancer. It just doesnâ€™t feel right to talk about these things during such a horrible time.
So I wonâ€™t. We will take a break to pray for Owen. Every free moment you have, pray. Every child you see, pray. Pray for Owen, pray for a cure, pray for healing and strength. As my friend Kate says, we must flood the heavens. I do believe in miracles and I hope you do too.
I went to visit Deena and Owen on Wednesday. You would think since Deena and I are long-time friends, who have partnered on a couple business ideas now, that we see a lot of each other. But sadly, we donâ€™t. We both lead busy lives and we only find time to talk on instant messenger, every once in a while on the phone, and the rare occasion we meet face to face for lunch or dinner. Itâ€™s a shame, really.
When Owen was diagnosed a couple years ago, I never imagined it would get this bad. I assumed he would have surgery to remove the tumor, maybe go through chemo as a precaution and then heâ€™d be back to his regular, teenage life. So I never visited. I didnâ€™t visit after surgery, I didnâ€™t visit during any of his hospital stays, I just supported Deena through instant message. And I am angry at myself for that.
So when I walked into Owenâ€™s room on Wednesday, it literally knocked the wind out of me. I was not prepared for his condition. Every picture I have seen has been of a smiling, teenage boy. But it is not my place to write about Owenâ€™s condition. Deena writes what she wants everyone to know on his Caring Bridge page. What I can say is I am forever changed. That visit with Owen had the biggest impact on me emotionally and mentally. I am not the same person I was before I stepped in his room. Every moment since that visit I have been fighting back tears. Every moment since that visit I have to refrain from holding on to my kids too tight. Every moment since that visit I have been praying. And every moment since that visit I have been trying to figure out when I can go back. Yes, as hard as it was to see Owen and Deena and the rest of their family in this situation, I felt a sense of peace being there with them. And I feel like at this point, the only thing I can do is pray and be there, so I will.
Never again will I put off being there for someone I care about.
P.S. I love this picture of Deena and Owen. Her brother took this at the CureSearch walk and I think he captured a precious moment between mother and son.