Our nation… Our country. There is a lot of sadness swirling around us. I have a multitude of thoughts about it all. Likely much of it isn’t popular opinion.
But my goal isn’t to be popular is it?
So many recently have joined my ranks of becoming bereaved parents… but from all different sources. Guns. Gorillas. Hot cars. Alligators.
I have 2 overarching thoughts on it all.
The anger. The outrage. I get it. I have it to. But I am also so jealous, jealous that people seem to care more about these deaths. That not enough people seem to care about the 7 today that will die from cancer. The 7 tomorrow that are being slowly tortured and killed.
I get it. Its not sensational. Because it IS so constant. Because is ISN’T slowing down. Logically I understand why its not newsworthy… Until it’s YOUR news. Your child. Your nephew. Your student.
Then it’s all consuming. You wonder with me then… where the outcry is? You wonder why our kids get only 1 cent from Relay for Life donations. You rage at the fact that our government allocates less than 4 percent of the federal funding for cancer research for our kids.
But we have to look in the mirror. And remember. Be honest and admit. We didn’t care either… Until it was printed in black and white… A child we cared about was struck by the random bullet. This gun. The one filled with pediatric cancer ammo. The bullet that hits 36 children every day.
Some reading this might already be in the fight with us.. Part of the masses of people outraged. Thank you. And I’d venture a guess that a sorry is due as well. A sorry for the child you care about being gunned down.
It’s the others we need to reach though… The ones that have no idea about these facts…
and especially the ones that do.. The ones that know. That care.. But aren’t touched so they aren’t all in. These are the people I am speaking to. The ones I am trying to get to REALLY see the signs.. To heed the warning. NOW. All in. No holds barred. Because pediatric cancer is a real and widespread crisis and its a danger that we as a community… as a country… as a world CAN protect our children from.
Which leads to my next inflammatory thought. What is with the judgments being handed down for all of these parents? (obviously this portion does not apply to the most recent Orlando shooting)
It’s shameful. It’s done immediately so without having a full story. It’s hypocritical.
We all make mistakes. Constantly in parenting. And sometimes those mistakes have horrific consequences. And so many of us, myself included, aren’t paying attention to what we should be. We are allowing our children to play in waters walking right past the signs telling us not to.
These deaths… well the majority of them (only known after we get all the facts) are accidents. Mistakes. Which is the number one killer of our nations children… But think about it. What a broad stroke that term is. What a massive grouping of scenarios creates the number one spot. Accidents. It holds that spot strongly and firmly.
Right behind though, number 2. Cancer. Childhood cancer is the second leading cause of death for our nations children.
Read that again.
Childhood cancer is the second leading cause of death for our nations children.
Perhaps you can say you never let go of your child’s hand at the zoo… or that you would never forget your child in a car… or never let them wade in water that has a sign saying you shouldn’t…
But can you say you have done everything you could to protect them from cancer?
And to be clear I am not talking eating organic… I am talking about galvanizing your community to action (read here about how to do that with Unravel).. about political pressure.. I am talking about showing the media you care about these stories being covered.. about being a champion for the cause in your workplace. .. and teaching your kids how they can create change too.
And if you can’t then get off your high horse judging parents in the absolute horror of losing their child. .. Dismount that glass house stallion of yours and get scared.
Because you can’t simply hold their hand or never lose sight of them to protect them from this attack.
October 27th 2014 it wasn’t my daughter. October 28th 2014 it was. And I will live the rest of my days until I see her again.. wishing I had only read the damn signs.
…until there is a cure..