My daughter has been fighting leukemia for almost a year now.
What it takes for my daughter to do this – to go back in to the hospital, to a world of no control, no voice that isn’t measured against your illness, to do this over and over again, is hard to measure. She survived 42 days in a coma, on a respirator and near death. I know she is stubborn, willful, and very tough. This tenacity and will to overcome is way beyond just stubborn or willful.
The leukemia was in remission and it is back. Now we are fighting – now, she is fighting – back to remission and then a bone marrow transplant.
When she was eleven she brought me a book she had made. One of those projects schools have kids do. She had done hers on how much I had helped her as a dad. I was in tears when she gave it to me. You can’t as a parent or person try and influence another person to admire you deliberately. I feel that’s true. I try and act according to my ethics, my morals, my ideals, and hope, especially as a parent that some of that comes through. She got that, it came through for her.
I have learned more from her, about myself and my limits and about life, in watching, mostly, as she goes through this, than I can ever imagine I taught her. I try and help where I am able, but there are no easy ways through this and what I experience in this is nothing to what she has to pull from herself to keep fighting.