As with anything in life, when you’re going through something difficult, it can seem as if your whole world is going to end. It’s hard to see a positive future. But looking back, you realize that you got through it and everything is fine.
Twelve-year-old Emmett is big into hockey. He started skating when he was 4 and playing when he was 6. He had hockey hair. He skateboarded. He was outside playing sports every minute he could. Then when he was 10, he started to feel lightheaded and fatigued.
Nobody expects to hear the words “Your child has cancer.” Nobody is prepared. And in our family’s case, our son Emmett was diagnosed with leukemia in an emergency room, and treatment began that day in the ICU. We had no time at all to prepare, or even to comprehend it all at the time.
For the past three years, Barb Murak has been an unofficial messenger for Roswell Park patients who are recovering from a blood or marrow transplant (BMT). Pulling a handcart filled with art supplies, from time to time the Artist-in-Residence stops by an inpatient room to deliver a surprise. “Knock, knock!” she calls out. “You’ve got mail!”
If spring is best greeted in a garden then I was fortunate to be in Buffalo in the spring, while my husband Roman was receiving his BMT at Roswell Park. We had arrived in mid-March (just as winter was ending) for Roman to be admitted. I was staying at the nearby Kevin Guesthouse.