Dear Minty

Minty This post is about hope. Hope that your child will be born healthy, live lively, and be happy. The hope that nothing bad will ever befall them whether it be a broken bone or broken heart. The hope that they will thrive, grow old, and live life to the fullest while you stand there beside them. Roxy (10 months) has given us a run for our money but she is a beautiful, healthy baby, and I am thankful for that.

This post is also about fear, the fear that accompanies becoming a parent. I relate it to tossing a coin in the air and watching it turn and turn, not knowing if and when it will land. Max is 11 and still I could keep myself up nights thinking about her being hit while crossing the street or being taken from me for any reason. I don’t know why God chooses some people and not others but I pray when I think of my children.

But what happens when you are forced to tackle both of these emotions at the same time? What happens when the hope you have for your child is rammed into by the fear you have for their well being?

A friend and mom has had to endure a mothers worst nightmare over the past 9 months. She gave birth to a beautiful baby girl named Minty in July of 2009 only to have her diagnosed with anaplastic ependymoma, a form of brain cancer 6 weeks later. No problem right? This is the 21st century, we have modern medicine on our side! This baby will be good in no time. Here is where hope kicks in, Minty was given a strong dose of chemotherapy and we all thought this whole brain tumor thing would be a distant memory soon enough.

But we were all wrong and fear was waiting around the corner.

An MRI in March 2010 discovered that several lesions that had grown during Minty’s chemo and multiple doctors confirmed the diagnosis of approximately 4 new cancerous tumors….

I have no words for this. No place in my mind where this news could process. If this were my child what would I do? What decision would I make? Would I cry? Yell? Throw stuff? shut down? I don’t know. What I do know is that no matter how much fear can consume you, hope is always close by.

Minty is a beautiful baby with brown eyes and chubby cheeks. She sticks her tongue out at you and likes all her toys. She has been in a lot of pain as of late and is sleeping frequently due to her suffering. Her incredibly strong and vibrant mother Mei Lai does a healing meditation every day at 12noon and again at 6pm. In short, she visualizes Minty’s tumors getting smaller and her recovering from this illness. At this point it is the only thing she can do.

Prologue: We had a first birthday party for Minty on July 10th 2010. Many friends and family were there and fun was had by all.

The day after her birthday and with the sounds of celebration ringing in her ears, Minty passed away.