There is a three-year-old little girl in southeastern Michigan who has never met her great-grandma. Today, she'll likely be playing on her swing set or watching her favorite episodes of Dora the Explorer. She will undoubtedly feel the tension and sadness in the house, but won't understand the cause. Today would have been her great-grandma's birthday and the pain of her loss remains palpable.
This won't be the usual Orbson blog full of wit, wisdom and ranting. I won't be recommending that you punch anyone, or reflecting on the idiocy of conservatives. In honor of this little girl's great-grandma, I would just like to talk about Cancer and the questions of a little girl.
You see, her great-grandma should be around today. She would have been, were it not for the horrific disease that took her life far too early. I have seen too many people in my life who were afflicted with Cancer and far too many who lost that final battle.
I want to rant now. To demonstrate through facts and figure how Cancer is so much worse of a threat than any terrorist organization could ever be. But, I won't. It has been said before and when I think of that little girl playing alone in the backyard, wondering why everyone is so sad, all I can think of is comforting her. Telling her what her great-grandma was like. How she was kind and funny, opinionated and sassy. How she was the matriarch of a great family and how she kept that family close and compassionate. Still, when that little girl asks if anyone will ever stop the Cancer, I'm not sure what I will say. I'm not sure if I can say yes.
I have known far too many people who have been afflicted by one form of Cancer or another. I count seven family members within seconds and decide I don't want to keep counting. To remember family, friends, acquaintances, it's too difficult. When life is extinguished before its time it leaves a gaping hole in the hearts of those who cared for them. We fill those holes with cherished memories, but the knowledge that is was too soon never allows them to completely heal. What can I possibly say to the little girl to give her hope? What could any of us say?
Then I remember who I am. An idealist, an eternal optimist and most importantly someone who will never give up fighting for what is right. So I will tie a pink ribbon in her hair, and take her by the hand to the nearest 5k charity walk. I will tell her about her great-grandma and tell her that today we walk in her memory. Today we walk for all of the other great-grandmas and grandpas, mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters who are still fighting. I tell her that when we walk, they do not fight alone. So when she asks again if anyone will ever stop Cancer, I will answer with a resounding yes. Because we will always keep fighting and we will always keep walking, hand in hand.