Wednesday, March 19, 2008


Today I am fantastically grateful, blessed and happy!

6 years ago today I was awaiting some news. I was out stalking clearance racks for a bargain to occupy my mind when a phone call came in. It wasn't the number I was expecting but I answered anyways. The call went something like this:

"Hello, Mrs. Thomas?"
I recognized the voice "This is she. Dr. Kolin?" My heart was in my feet.
"Yeah, hi. I was just calling to ask you who is treating Joshua's sinus infection."
"He has a sinus infection?"
"Oh yeah, both sides poor kid. How's he feeling? Wait, the oncologist didn't call you?"
At this point my stomach joined my feet. "No. I thought this call might be him. He's feeling ok. Can you tell me anything?"
"Oh, Oh sure! Joshua's scans are clear. He's ok. He's in remission."

This part (above) I will forever remember almost verbatim. The rest of the conversation is a blur. I leaned on a wall and had to hold myself from sliding down it as I talked.

Somehow prescriptions were written to take care of the sinus infection and I thanked her (profusely, I'm sure) and hung up. I remember calling Tim and having to leave him a message. I remember calling my mother, still in the store, and both of us crying for joy.

Not even knowing why the heck I was there in the first place, I left the store and had a good cry in my car. Minutes later I started calling everyone I knew and shared the good news. Joshua's battle with Stage 4 Hodgkin's Lymphoma Nodular Sclerosis was over. He had won. We all did.

To this day. Today. We celebrate it as his birthday. Lucky boy has 2 of them! In November he will be 17. Today he is 6. Last year we had a big gathering for his 5th birthday. It was the banner year we could say he was "cured". This year will be quieter but no less joyous.

On his birthday in November he gets presents and stuff. Today we celebrate the greatest gift anyone can be given, the gift of a healthy life.

Today I am outraged.
5 years ago today we declared war on Iraq, Saddam Hussein and his regime.
5 years and so many senseless casualties.
5 years of questionable and downright faulty government intelligence.
5 years of looking for WMD that may never have existed.
5 years of oil moguls and contractors getting filthy rich off supplying the war and the ever-escalating cost of fossil fuel.
5 years of a quandry. How do we as a nation express our pride in America and our military, yet mourn thousands of innocents caught in the web of a war for which our nation bares a lion's share of responsibility?
5 years of praying for this war to end, for our leaders to wake up and solve the problems that face US here in OUR nation and to make US their top priority, for change, for a victory that can only come when there is no need for the power of one nation over another.
5 years of praying for peace, for salaam, for shalom.


Anonymous said...

I still remember my mom sitting me down when i was seven to explain to me about Chris's cancer.

It's a scary thing... and even scarier for your family... Chris and I were so young when he was diagnosed, the memories fade more and more as the years go by. It will be 12 years this May since he was diagnosed.

But here's to many healty years to come for Josh and Chris!!!

Lea said...

Many blessing to you and your family, Nancy. You're never far from my thoughts when I talk about Joshua.
Much love,
Other MoM

Lea said...

I have asked permission to share the comments I've been getting off-blog about this post so that everyone can read them. I'll do it a few at a time as permission arrives.

Thank you all so much for the support and sentiments you've sent along. Every connection is heart felt.



God be with the families of those we've lost over there, and God be with the ones who are healing
both with external and internal wounds.

xo xo
Sending you and Josh a HUGE HUG today! That's something to celebrate for sure. He's one special young man.

You are a gifted writer Lea. I enjoy reading your blogs.

((((((((((((((((Lea)))))))))))))))) I had no idea, I am so thrilled. NO make that ECSTATIC that Joshs 6th remission birthday is today! Please wrap your arms around him and give him a huge hug for me!

I am equally outraged at this war, I want it over. I want 1-20-09 to get here, it cant come soon enough!! I pray every day that our troops are brought home....

You have a very strong family, may God bless each and every one of you!

Tonjia in Colorado
PAFM to Breanna

Nelson said...

Hi Lea

Happy birthday JOSH!

Many Many more to come.

Lea said...

Great, great posting. Much love and blessings on Josh, you and the whole family. And flying V!

You all are in my loving thoughts today. Give Josh a big ‘ol bear hug from “Aunt” Nancy!!! And I’ll save mine for you when we can get together. Much love sister-wife.


Thank you Lea for sharing this, as a two time cancer survivor I know how this disease touches peoples lives. I wish you and your family all the best that life has to offer. I too wish our country was as fortunate.

Susan (KS)

Lea said...


I celebrate in your joy, in the joy of your son, in the joy of your family. I wish I could wrap my arms around you and hold you in a heartfelt hug.

The WAR, I don't understand it, never have. I could never understand why we humans insist on killing as a ways to solve differences. I pray often for all that are involved in conflict. We can only hope that Mother Earth will heal the wounds we have caused her because of our bombs and forgive us. If only others could understand that we truely are souls on a human journey i believe that life on this earth would be so much better.

Be well my friend and know that you are in my thoughts.


Lea said...

Thank you Lea, I`m so thankful for your family to have this joy to celebrate! Its a tear jerker!
His remission allways brings a happy tear to my eyes. Give him a hug for me today! (Lilly)

Anonymous said...

Oh Lea, Happy 6th healthy birthday to Joshua and 100 more!
I know how you feel about the other 5 year anniversary...especially when are
kids are in the middle of it's rough to think about. I just focus
on supporting the troops, supporting my kids and staying positive. Erik
called today and is getting ready for his first 6 month deployment...on a
sub. It will be strange not hearing from him several times a week. But he
signed on to defend his country just like the rest of our kids...let's pray
for the best and stick together for support. We'll ALL survive this crazy
war move on to a peaceful afterlife...

Hugs, Jackie
PAFM of AB Ryan, PNM of SN Erik

Anonymous said...

Thanks sooo much for sharing that with us. I haven't had a chance to hit your blog since I started the new job. Hope you have heard from Avivah lately.

I have been meaning to get in touch with you. Give me a call.