1. The blood drive yesterday was nothing short of miraculous. Seventy five people came through those doors ready to donate. THANK YOU, everyone! I cannot wait to post all of my pictures. Until then, I must post at least one. Bob, one of the donors, really opened my eyes. This blood drive marked his one hundred fifty second time he donated blood. He has donated 19 gallons of blood in all. Why is he so devoted to this? He lost his own little girl, Joanne, to leukemia when she was four years old in 1955. I am amazed by how far we have come in treating this disease, and I look forward to the day when this disease is archaic and obsolete. Until then, it is people like Bob who really stoke the fire in my soul to keep moving forward in donating blood, time, and money on behalf of childhood cancer. Those moms and dads out there who have lost a child, but CONTINUE to remain in the trenches of the war on pediatric cancer have taken the place of superstars and famous personalities in the media for me. They live with a constant sense of loss, yet they keep fighting. Since they wage forward in the battle, they are continually reminded of that grief of loss, but they won't give up. Thank you, parent warriors out there (like Bob). I am in awe of you all! Even when Gideon beats this disease, I promise to remain alongside you!
(Auntie Marianne, Gideon, Grandma and Bob)
2. Right at this moment, BRODY IS RIDING THE ZAMBONI AT THE JOE LOUIS ARENA!!!! His good deed came back and double-blessed him. I am teary just in typing this. Our friends at Lawson contacted Red Wings personnel, and apparently many of YOU, the blog-readers, emailed them as well. So, I was called today by a Red Wings management person and was asked if Brody would like to ride the Zamboni at the play-offs! THANK YOU, everyone, for loving on our boy. He will never forget this moment and as he grows older and becomes more and more obsessed with hockey, he will own this story in his heart.
Yes, I wanted to celebrate those two monumental things today. Gideon is my steroid monster (which is why we aren't at the Joe Louis Arena, too), but he's still very easy to love. I called him "Honey Bunny" and the temper flare from that was enough to chase the Easter Bunny away for good. In fact, I'm pretty sure our garden will be bunny-free since his screams echoed around the block, at least. Still, it was kind of cute the way I had to assure him that yes, I realize he is a human being. Also, he demanded that I play "We Belong" by Pat Benatar over and over and over again tonight. He wanted it as his ONLY song for his lullaby. I am thankful that modern technology invented a "repeat" button for just such demands. In other 'roid news, I have now purchased my third bucket of grilled chicken (which I must still skin before he'll sink his teeth into it. And, Gideon says I am "THE SLOWEST SKIN PEELER IN THE WOWLD!" Yes, that's "wowld" and not "world.") If I look at all of these things from the outside and process how silly they are, it makes life MUCH easier. I have also learned that laughing during one of his tantrums is not a good idea, either. I started laughing, and then Gideon, who always laughs when I laugh, started laughing through the screams so that it was an insane concoction of rage-giggles. Never have I observed that. I think the giggles fed the anger, though. So, I have since learned to hide my laughter. So you all know: Gideon is not any kind of furry creature. Please recognize that.
Still, in all of this madness, Gideon is a deep thinker when he's on those meds. I think it's because he can't slow down the wheels in his mind. During the blood drive, he asked to go upstairs of Hope Reformed's sanctuary with me. As we sat in there, we listened to the silence and stared at the sun spilling through the stained glass. It was a very pretty peace. Then, out of the blue, Gideon asked me, "Mommy, why are there bad people? Why is there a devil? Why do bad things happen to people not naughty?" His brow was furrowed in worry and almost anger. Wow. I was not expecting that. To see those pure blue eyes and the stained glass framing his fuzzy head was too much for me... Plus the fact that there were over fifteen people in the "waiting area" to give blood in this precious boy's honor. I wondered if my heart could handle it. This was a time when I had to ask God to take over the words while I simply moved my mouth. We had such an in-depth conversation about that, in that peace-filled room that allowed the sun to light up speckles of dust like miniature angels flying around us. By the end, he had more knowledge and understanding in those eyes than worry and anger. He said to me, "God always wins and beats the bad. Even if I don't see it, I will see it someday." Yes, Gideon. Yes, yes, yes.