The Best Gift Anyone Can Give Me

The Best Gift Anyone Can Give Me

It’s my birthday in exactly one week. Hopefully, I’m getting a husband in surgery. Really, an end to the waiting is a good thing, and it’s pretty much the thing I can guarantee would make me happiest. I’m going to be 31 years old, with three kids under six and a husband with brain cancer. This is definitely not what I foresaw my thirties looking like. I don’t know what I expected, but I don’t think it was this. Speaking about sexual assault and sex positivity, writing about postpartum depression and astrocytoma… although to be frank, I always saw myself writing about absolutely everything. I just never expected it to be these things.

I never expected that this would be my life. Half my things tucked into storage, waiting on my husband’s brain surgery and recovery so we could go back to the business of our hectic, stressful existence. This isn’t the kid of vacation from my life I ever wanted. This isn’t a vacation from my life. This is redoubling the stress and chaos and putting it all together in a neat little package with a note on top that says, “Happy Birthday- welcome to your REAL thirties, lady.”

So many of you have reached out and asked me if there’s anything you can do, and I truly appreciate it. But there’s just not very much to be done to make the waiting, cooking, cleaning, or any of that easier. There is, however, something you can do for me personally.

As you may recall, I’m participating in the Postpartum Progress Climb Out of the Darkness, and I’ve barely touched my fundraising goal.

Also, for the second year, I’m running the Lace Up For RAINN 5k. And once again, I haven’t even looked at my fundraising page.

So if you’d like to do something nice for me, for my birthday or to help out with things going on here, please consider donating. I like to know that life is happening outside of the chaotic and occasionally traumatic bubble of M’s treatment and prognosis. I like to know that as much as I love my husband and want to fight to help other people with his disease live full and happy lives, I’m still living my life, and these are the issues that matter the most to me. These are things I can do to help make a difference, and no amount of sitting in a hospital waiting room on my birthday and cramming my face with cake is going to do that.

My birthday is in seven days, and I don’t want stuff. We’re trying to sell our house, and stuff is just going to go into boxes.

This is the most important thing you can do for me, no doubt. The girls’ preschool is already planning meal trains, their friends’ moms offering to drive them to and from school, and unless you have a secret cure for cancer or a really fantastic job you can send my way, this is how you can show you care.

Donate to my Climb Out of the Darkness, or to the Lace Up For RAINN 5k.


Me after last year’s Lace Up For RAINN 5k


Me and my family at last year’s Chicago Climb

I just noticed how incredibly many pictures I have of M wearing that shirt. He was wearing it the weekend after his first diagnosis. The day we told the girls about his recurrence. At last year’s Climb…

I gave him that shirt for his birthday the first year we were dating. That shirt will be ten years old soon.

I can’t help myself wishing he’d already had as many years with the girls as he had with that shirt.


M, two days after his initial seizure, two days before diagnostic surgery, wearing a two year old shirt.

It’s amazing the little things that suddenly seem to matter when you least expect them to.


Donate to RAINN, or donate to Postpartum Progress.

Thank you.

Read more about Chicago’s Climb here – Chicago’s Climb Out Of The Darkness
Read my latest post here – Living With Cancer and Without Fear

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