Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Giving Tuesday--help JLK, a six-year-old fighting a brain tumor

Wrote this on my hand to remind myself to hit the ATM and deposit my friend's check.
Then I cried every time I looked at it.

JLK, who lives in Gilroy, California, is on my mind constantly. She creeps from the back of my mind to the front, and I cry. Then other things enter in, and she subsides to the back again. But she's always there.

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine named Kate responded to my blog post asking people to buy JLK lunch after her chemo treatment. She mailed me a check to pass along to JLK's family.

This woman who sent the check, we went to graduate school together. I knew her for only two years...and that was nearly 20 years ago. We've had no "live" contact since. We are Facebook friends now, but she rarely posts, and that's the extent of our relationship. So what possessed her to send a donation for JLK?


Knowing she can help pure strangers.


(By the way, Kate is not the only one who responded to my blog post or Facebook posts and sent a donation. There were many others, and I thank them heartily.)

I wrote before about wondering whether my grief helps in any way. It's like the tree falling unseen in the woods thing--does it make a sound if no one hears it? Is there a tally-keeper in the sky who can connect up all the tears--mine from Gold Country, Kate's from wherever she lives, everyone in Gilroy and Morgan Hill and around the world now reading JLK's mom's blog--if there are enough disparate events of grief and prayer, can the talley-keeper collect them into a meaningful whole? A helpful whole? Maybe God gets presented a pie chart and that data influences how things go.

Well, whether it helps or not, I can't stop "donating" my grief. The idea of a six-year-old in radiation therapy for cancer is just wrong. As her mom told us all on her blog, she whispers to JLK's unconscious ear just as she leaves her for her treatment: shrink, tumor, shrink.

This is Giving Tuesday. Please give to JLK's family. What do they need it for?
Money for their astronomical medical bills
Money so Tony, the dad, can take time off work and spend it with his daughter and her siblings
Money for a trip to Disneyland, possibly the last chance she will have to go

If you are reading this after Giving Tuesday ends, consider that you could ask people to give a contribution in your name for your Christmas, Hannukah, or Kwanzaa gift. It's so easy. Paypal'ing a donation takes mere seconds if you already have a PayPal account, and mere minutes if you need to set one up. Or you could send me a check and I'll forward it on.

Thanks for considering it.

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