In a family, when one hurts, you all hurt. When one rejoices, all rejoice. When one is in need, others are there with a helpful hand or a hug of support.
There have been other blogs posted here about how astounding it is to find such good friends online. Friends that are in similar circumstances, with their husbands/boyfriends in the CG, that understand you on a whole different level than most family members or civilian friends can. Friends that you've never met face to face.
I want to tell you about one of my friends today.
Her name is Angela Fox. She and I "met" online about 4 years ago. It wasn't until the last couple of years that we really began to know each other a little better. Angela is the mommy to 3 fantastic, spunky kids. Their smiles are like nothing else, and the pictures of the 3 of them together are always great. She's busy with swim lessons, a husband with an underway schedule, and trying to keep up with every day crazy life. She's also busy with oncology appointments, MRIs, and various specialists that I can hardly comprehend.
Hadley, Angela's daughter, has cancer. She was diagnosed a little over 4 years ago. There have been many MRIs, chemotherapy, medicines, and doctors involved. The terror of hospital stays, new treatment options, and more MRIs. Not to mention the stress of PCS'ing and everything that entails, including trying to catch new doctors up to speed. I can remember the mantra that Angela used during the first round(s) of chemo, "Peace & Results". It really struck a chord inside me. The grace, strength, and hope of this family was astounding.
The grace, strength, and hope are still there. Strength beyond my comprehension. Hadley's last MRIs haven't shown the stable brain tumor that has been treated and watched for these few years. Instead, there was new tumor activity. There is no treatment recommendation for Hadley now, as the risks outweigh the benefits. The word "terminal" has been given to her case.
In true Coast Guard family style, an outpouring of love and support has been surrounding the Fox family. A fund has been established for Hadley. Hadley's Magic Days fund will be used to make the days with her family the best they can possibly be.
I'm proud to be part of a family that offers so much. I mean, sure, the benefits of the military are great, but it's the benefit of the people around us - of being part of this big Coastie family - that makes this life really special. I'm proud to know that I'm in a family that takes care of its own. A family that tries to pick up the pieces when another feels broken.
If you, or someone you know would be interested in contributing to Hadley's Magic Days, or would like to learn more about the Fox family, please click the graphic below to visit Hadley's site.