By Shelly, mother of 2 Double H campers, Kristen and Eric
Becoming a mother is a life changing moment in a woman’s life. A second life changing event is to hear that your child has been diagnosed with cancer. There are simply no words to describe how immediate the fear, how your mind takes you to places you never imagined you would go. As a family you head down the road of childhood cancer and you realize the challenges are unending.
When this journey began, Kristen was a spirited third grader who danced, loved running and chasing after her brother. Our family was humbled when a perceived sports injury turned into bone cancer. Within a day, we confronted the realities of surgery, chemotherapy and all that comes with it. As a mother, I wished the diagnosis was for me. Like most parents, I would have traded anything and everything for the safety of my children. No mother wants to see her child’s life change, watch her little one suffer thru treatment and know that some of the things her child loves most she will never be able to do again. As a parent you wake up each morning determined to keep trying, determined to find the happy medium and love your children with so much intensity that there must be a happy ending as a result.
What all parents want for their child is happiness and that is what the Double H Ranch does for the many lucky children who are fortunate enough to attend. Within minutes of arrival, counselors were surrounding our car cheering and laughing and I knew it was going to be ok! One look at the daily schedule and I knew they would be entertained and active (and I too wanted to stay for camp). One look at the faces of all the smiling counselors and I knew my kids were in good hands. I am happy to say both of my children LOVED camp, made lots of friends and had a wonderful time.
For Kristen, she wasn’t stared at or catered to. She was able to be just like everyone else and didn’t let her “yet to be healed leg” stop her from the ropes course or roller coasters. As for myself, I enjoyed a week of quiet and peace of mind. I don’t remember the last time I had that and I am truly grateful to Double H Ranch for that as well. As a mother, I will continue to strive to put the cancer behind us, to regain the normal routines of life, but deep in my heart, I know life will never be the same. We will however live with a new spirit for life. A life where everyday counts and should be lived to the fullest. A life where we let the little things go and focus on what is important. A life full of “APPRECIATION” for places like the Double H Ranch and the wonderful counselors whom made my children forget the unfairness of life and simply enjoy the moment.
Palio is participating in @SocialMadness and has chosen Double H Ranch as the not-for-profit they will donate the winnings to if Palio is 1 of the 3 national champions. Social Madness, launched by The Business Review and parent company American City Business Journals, measures the growth of each participating company’s presence across LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.
Here’s how you can help Palio help Double H Ranch. Like Palio’s Facebook page; follow them on Twitter @paliosaratoga; and connect with their corporate page on LinkedIn. And, definitely vote for Palio in the medium companies category at SocialMadness.com.
Palio is an advertising agency revolutionizing pharmaceutical and healthcare marketing to create experiences that will Never Be Forgotten.