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Eleven and a half
years ago Emma, was diagnosed with a low
grade brain tumor. She was not yet 2 years old and cute as a button. I
may be biased but she is still cute as a button (even with teen angst and brand
new "bad hair days") and working her tail feathers off to be a normal
13 year old and not the cancer kid.
Her childhood has had
more surgeries and doctors appointments and pokes than most. She has begun to
grasp the ramifications of cancer and chemo and the arduous battle she has been
waging. She is still somewhat oblivious to the monstrous stress cancer creates
for those who love her, which is perhaps the greatest gift.
This will be my 9th
ride in the PMC. I am once again joined by the amazing members of Team Emma's
Enchantment. Those wonderful people who are doing everything and anything they
can to keep Emma going. All rider raised dollars will be directed to the Low
Grade Astrocytoma Research Fund at Dana Farber in Boston. Although Emma
receives most of her services at Dartmouth Hitchcock the pioneering research
that has kept her movin and groovin and gracing the stage for the last 11 years
is generated there.
Low grade brain tumors
like these are treated with a "management approach." The trick is to
keep them under control and not let them (or the chemo) create other problems,
until they exhaust themselves. This, for a parent, and anyone connected with
these kiddos, is also exhausting.
It's hard to watch a
kiddo struggle with being smaller than everyone else and feel a bit "left
behind". It's tough to wonder if she will ever catch up and feel like she
truly fits in. Emma has such an amazing group of friends who embrace her for
who she is and all of her crazy silliness. They recognize her drive to keep up
and encourage her every single day of her life to be all that she can be. By
supporting these researchers and their brilliant work on brain tumor management
we too are helping Emma be the dramatic, smart, funny, teen she wants to be.
Over the last 11 years
I have watched Tim and Mandy live life a little differently than they had imagined it. They have had hundreds of
people helping them keep it together as they
So I will ride again
this year. I will ride with hope in my heart that all these miles are making a
difference. Not just to Emma but to her brother who gets left behind on
treatment days. For Tim and Mandy who
just need to take a deep breath. I will ride with Tim, Mandy her dad (himself a cancer survivor) and so many
wonderful friends who make up Team Emma's Enchantment. I ride because I
it inspires me, it makes feel like I am making a difference.
I ride because my
friend’s daughter has cancer and its one way I know I can do something to help.
100% of the monies
raised by Team Emma's Enchantment will go to the low grade astrocytoma research
fund at DFCI. Advances are being made towards management of
this persistent menace. Any support you can offer to my ride would
be greatly appreciated. You can donate by clicking on the donate to my
ride icon and following prompts or by sending a check made payable
to PMC to;