A Piece of Home 2016 “Sponsor a Tree”

It is nearing that time of year again, the time where everyone starts preparing for the holidays, whether you celebrate Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Hanukkah(these are just a few of the celebrations that take place). Although in some aspects different they have one thing in common and that’s to be together as a family and usually in the home enjoying the celebration. In the world of childhood cancer or any serious medical world that’s not always the option for those going through the treatments or the hardships, many spend their time of celebration in the hospital’s where they need to be at that time for whatever the reason it may be. Our mission at Nathan’s Story with “A Piece of Home” is to help ease that by bringing some of that home comfort to those in patient.
As many of you can only imagine being in the hospital over the holidays is no fun…now imagine yourself as a child fighting cancer, a new way of life for you and your family that you have just embarked on in the last month. Nathan started his chemo treatments on Thanksgiving day of 2010, what better day we thought to be thankful for a “beginning to and end”. The chemo treatments were three weeks out of four in the hospital as inpatient, he was pulled out of school and taught by the teacher in the hospital and a home teacher the schools sent to our home, when he was there. Nathan and our family spent every holiday in the hospital as in patient either for chemo treatments or fevers/isolation with the exception of Halloween. The staff did everything they could to help make this as joyful and painless as they could but when it all came down to it we were still in the hospital for the holiday’s; childhood cancer seemed determined to take from us those special moments that we as a family cherish.
We at Nathan’s Story C.C.O. wanted to help make it even more special, beings we could look at it from a different perspective then most since we actually were in the situation. We personally came up with the idea of bringing in “A Piece of Home” for the holidays. Our first year and within months of becoming an official 501(c)(3) we raised funds to get the children that would be in the hospital for the holidays their own holiday tree. The trees we chose were specifically chosen with the children in mind and with the help of Nathan himself. The trees are no more then 32-36″ with fiber optic lights, lights that change colors automatically and cascade through the room with soft soothing colors to be able to relax and and enjoy. The children as well as the family truly enjoy the soft glow of the tree and the changing of the lights, it offers a relaxed and peaceful moment.
We reached out to everyone with our “sponsorship program” last year for the first time to help us grow in our mission and make it even more special and there was a response that was truly amazing and helped not only provide the trees but we where able to provide a holiday dinner and gifts for ALL the children including the siblings, we had crafts and just all around a great coming together of everyone around enjoying each others company and conversation; all this on the unit of a hospital.
Won’t you please help us again by “Sponsoring a Tree”…

Sponsorship is $20.00 per tree; you can donate by secure check out below or with check,  Mail to: Nathan’s Story PO Box 213 Galena MD 21635

Thank You…

Nathan’s Story




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**All donations are tax deductible as we are a Federally approved 501c3 non-profit and will provide receipt of donation upon request.

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Dates of Distress…

There are many dates we are just geared to remember in our lives automatically from childhood into adulthood: birthdays, anniversary’s, holidays, and others that may play a role in our everyday lives…

WE have dates too just like everyone else, but there are additional dates plugged into our brains, ones we don’t want to remember, ones that bring heartache, heartbreak and many times devastation to our lives…These are dates and times of our child’s diagnosis with childhood cancer, surgeries, start/end of chemo’s, and bad news; the list goes on, dates we should not ever have to hear. You try very hard to get past these days as the calendar reaches them, you tell yourself this year will be different: this day we will make it matter for other reasons/happier ones, you try to replace bad news/feelings with great memories and positives news…you can’t; you just can’t replace these days as if they never existed, because they are a part of you, your family, your heart, and your life. These date are dates that no one should ever have to have embedded in their minds, no one should have to look at that calendar and dread what tomorrow will bring because they were told however long ago it was, their child has cancer, time is limited, no more we can do, and again the list goes on and on. Too many parents are hearing these words too many times; one bad piece of news after another…IT NEEDS TO CHANGE!!!
Today on September 27, 2012 we stopped Nathan’s chemo, we stopped his treatments because his treatments were and had caused so much damage to his organs that the next one could be the one proven to shut anyone of if not more then one, shut them down, them? His organs! We had to choose his path that day and decide if we were going to continue to fight his cancer or try to save his organs now…how do you as a parent, not educated n this world make this decision; you have to weigh it all in and decide on the here and the now; it’s like using the scale system to decide your child’s life and these are decisions the Dr.s cannot make for you, just provide you with information to help you along the way. we decided to try and save his organs; to try and maybe prevent failure and need to transplant, we won’t really ever know if we’ve succeeded till we get there because it could happen at any time now in his life, his organs are damaged that’s a definite but what does that mean for him? It means you go everyday just praying you made the right decision. Its dates like these I talk about above, dates that you should not have to hear when you are enjoying your child grow. This is a date that will as well as many other forever be engraved into my mind, not for a lack of trying to erase it, you cannot; it don’t work like that. Just when you thought it may be gone you have to explain his last day of chemo to someone and that he didn’t finish his treatment plan and why he didn’t finish…
Oh and let’s not forget he’s sitting right there next t you listening-observing your every move and taking in every word you say, they understand far more then you give them credit for; for this is how they grew up listening to these discussions and terminology around them…IT’S NOT RIGHT!!! So many times more then not I hear the question how long has he been off treatment? I reply with the correct time and I hear excitement, yes that’s great I am excited but for Nathan there has been a game changer in there that many do not know or understand anything about…This day 4 years ago changed many things for Nathan; everyday is precious for us because we truly do not know what tomorrow will bring, but yet we have to raise him in a way that he’s normal; when all we want to do is just celebrate everyday that he’s ok and nothing is going on. You just can’t and usually don’t explain that to everyone…that bittersweet day of “no-more chemo” and “organ(s) failure- high risk” you hear phrases like it’s not “IF” for your son now it’s “WHEN“…WHAT??!! yes you hear these words, you deal with changes along the way that only make you wanna celebrate everyday because you just don’t know what’s lurking around the next corner…

These are dates you just can’t get past…those dreaded, embedded dates!

Childhood cancer knows no boundaries and treatments are very old and were created for adults…help make that difference in the way our children get treated while fighting childhood cancer(S)… SHOW YOU CARE BE AWARE!!!!

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A Piece of Home 2015

As many of you can only imagine being in the hospital over the holidays is no fun…now imagine yourself as a child fighting cancer, a new way of life for you and your family that you have just embarked on in the last month. Nathan started his chemo treatments on Thanksgiving day of 2010, what better day we thought to be thankful for a “beginning to and end”. The chemo treatments were three weeks out of four in the hospital as inpatient, he was pulled out of school and taught by the teacher in the hospital and a home teacher the schools sent to our home, when he was there. Nathan and our family spent every holiday in the hospital as in patient either for chemo treatments or fevers/isolation with the exception of Halloween. The staff did everything they could to help make this as joyful and painless as they could but when it all came down to it we were still in the hospital for the holiday’s, childhood cancer seemed determined to take from us those special moments that we as a family cherish.

We at Nathan’s Story C.C.O. wanted to help make it even more special, beings we could look at it from a different perspective then most since we actually were in the situation. We personally came up with the idea of bringing in “A Piece of Home” for the holidays. Our first year and within months of becoming an official 501(c)(3) we raised funds to get the children that would be in the hospital for the holidays their own holiday tree. The trees we chose were specifically chosen with the children in mind and with the help of Nathan himself. The trees are no more then 32-36″ with fiber optic lights, lights that change colors automatically and cascade through the room with soft soothing colors to be able to relax and and enjoy. This year would be our second year, and we hoped to make it even more magical then the last…We wanted to provide the children and families not only the trees but a holiday evening, that would include dinner, trees, gifts, crafts, and maybe a few games…an evening that will let them forget where they are and let them feel like they have “A Piece of Home” with them.

We are started a fundraiser to help us do just that, and it soared with the help of our volunteers and friends it was a GREAT success, there was plentiful for everyone. We had so many friends and others whom we did not know jump right in and sponsor a Tree for the children and the volunteers to help us that evening was amazing. A special group called the Island Creek Garden Tractor Pullers got involved with the help of the donation of the toys for the children and their siblings, they took up donations and we met one evening and went shopping, we had children from ages 2wks to 18yrs of age.

We’d like to thank everyone who became part of such a wonderful moment for the children and families over the holiday season, you all truly are a blessing.

Thank you!!!

Nathan’s Story Childhood Cancer Organization

 

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