I received devastating news this evening.
Baby Chase, the ring bearer at my cousin George's wedding last November, has been fighting cancer for almost a year. With the help of St Jude's Hospital, this little guy has undergone treatments and surgeries, pain and suffering that no child should ever have to endure. He was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma.
His Aunt Melissa, my cousin's wife, has lead the charge for support for her little nephew. She and her sisters helped organize Team Chase in his honor. We have all supported their efforts, becoming team members through financial donations and spiritual support. Chase became 'our' baby as people all over the world united in the Christian Faith to pray that Our Lord provide a healing for this child.
Tonight it looks as though His plan is to bring Chase home to heaven.
Chase's cancer has spread to the lining of his brain and his spinal cord. At this moment his parents are making the decision they hoped would not be necessary: how to make their precious child as comfortable as possible as he awaits his meeting with Jesus.
I read the daily sniping and whining that takes place on sites like The Hive. "You slandered me!" "You called me a name!" or my personal favorite "I have been marginalized!" (which makes absolutely no sense to me whatsoever but hey, everyone is entitled to describe their feelings anyway they want) and I chuckle. What a bunch of babies, I used to think.
Tonight I realize that none of those who take umbrage at being disagreed with or ignored deserve to be called babies. If Chase is any indication, none of these people are brave or resilient enough to be a baby.
The strength of character and the physical endurance it takes to be a baby with cancer is amazing. This little guy, this Chase, has proven to be a far stronger person than I. And I don't mind admitting that his immediate family, the ones who have endured the agony of watching their little guy go through horrendous chemotherapy and surgeries, are much better humans than most of us. In fact, I would go so far as to say they are closer to be fully human than most people (including me) will ever be in this lifetime. Their ability to stand strong in their Faith and Trust in Jesus is awe-inspiring.
I continue to pray for a miracle. Why not? I am a Catholic and for us miracles are every day affairs. We are not ashamed of the mystical side of our personalities. After all, without a firm understanding that what happens here on earth is not our primary reality we would become overwhelmed with sadness. I know how much I would love to hear that our prayers have been answered and Chase has been healed. I also know that I must accept the Will of The Father and trust that He knows what is best for Chase, for his family and for the fulfillment of His Kingdom here on Earth.
Lord, I believe.
Strengthen my unbelief.
St Jude, pray for us!