Hayden C.

$434

Welcome to Hayden's Fundraising page!

While studying for his very first middle school midterm in 7th grade, Hayden began to have trouble using his right hand and arm.  At first we thought this was fatigue,More...

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Welcome to Hayden's Fundraising page!

While studying for his very first middle school midterm in 7th grade, Hayden began to have trouble using his right hand and arm.  At first we thought this was fatigue, or nerves for the big test.  But when it didn’t go away with a little rest and a snack,  off to the emergency room we went, still thinking this was probably nothing truly serious. 

But within hours we had learned it was a softball sized brain tumor pressing on the side of his brain.  Some people will say that in that moment everything changes.  But for us it was different.  It was a slow recognition over hours and days of all the pieces of our lives that were suddenly and forever different. 

Over the next two years, Hayden endured 3 surgeries, 33 rounds of radiation and 6 months of weekly chemo. There were so many, many MRI’s, doctor visits, bloodwork, midnight dashes to the ER.  Through it all Hayden was the same teenage boy with a wicked sense of humor.  He hosted pizza and Xbox parties in his room at CHOA, cracked jokes with nurses and begged to dye his hair blue when it grew back.  

But it wasn’t enough. 

Despite the best doctors and treatments the world currently has to offer, his tumor came back months after the end of treatment.  This time it was inoperable and untreatable. We packed in a lifetime over the next six months. Hayden visited Disney, Key West, and the Everglades.  He cooked with famous chefs and met his favorite YouTuber.  When he could no longer travel we put up a map of the world and ate our way around the globe at every restaurant in Atlanta.  A blue haired kid in a wheelchair attracts a lot of attention and people came out of the woodwork to make his last months remarkable.  

Organizations like CURE are vital.   They know from the inside what families facing a cancer diagnosis need.  They know that when that routine doctor visit turns into a hospital admission that you didn’t bring a toothbrush along.  They show up with a bag of toiletries to get you through the night.  They know that you can’t leave the floor when you child is hooked up to chemo so they bring lunch to you. They know that despite what’s in the movies you don’t sit around crying all the time, and that sometimes you and your kid are just really bored in the hospital.  So they bring games.  They know that only 4% of all cancer funding goes to research treatments for pediatric cancers. 

And that it’s not enough. 

CURE funds the research that someday will provide hope to kids with a devastating diagnosis.  And in the meantime, they will continue to show up with the toothbrushes and the legos and the plates of spaghetti to get them through.

 

CURE's Kids Conquer Cancer One Day at a Time

During September’s Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, CURE Childhood Cancer hosts CURE's Kids Conquer Cancer One Day at a Time. The goal of this program is to honor and remember cancer’s youngest heroes. By sharing these inspirational stories, we seek to raise awareness of the issues surrounding pediatric cancer, while also raising money to fund research that will conquer it. Since it’s inception, CURE’s Kids Conquer Cancer One Day at a Time has raised more than $2.3 million to fight childhood cancer.

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