Okay, so I put in some different symbols for the aggregators, but here, in my post, I'll spell it out.
I just watched two movies. One, a documentary, called "Crazy Sexy Cancer." And the other, which you've probably all seen, "Little Miss Sunshine."
End result: I have a vision, like from a really funny, crazy movie, that I want to make real, but I know that I don't have the courage, and do have the "modicum of decency" to not create:
But, just for fun, imagine the scene:
Next Spring. Lizard Eater and her family -- The Husband, an 11 year old son, an 8 year old daughter, a 5 year old daughter, and Little Warrior herself, 2 years old ... all walk onto the track of a suburban high school. They are surrounded by a moderate amount of people, there to cheer on cancer survivors. All of the members of Lizard Eater's family, including herself, the seminarian and somewhat-model mom, are wearing hats that say, in capital letters:
Isn't it a great vision?
So what if it won't become reality. The vision still reflects something everyone in my family can get behind. My kids, only 2-5-8-11, can all get behind it. The 5 year old remembers it all -- it's probably why she retreats into herself in this first week of kindergarten. It's grandparents being here, but with worried looks on their faces, and presents given by worried, distracted adults who don't spend much time with her, but instead want to ask her questions about her baby sister. Anyone gets sick now, even the cat, and she asks, dispassionately, "Is it cancer?" Casually. Like it's a cold.
The 8 and the 11 know cancer, remember not being allowed to go to birthday parties or Chuck E. Cheese or the library for-cripes-sake. And washing their hands all the time. And getting attention at school from sympathetic teachers. And grandparents morphing from fun, spoiling people to guys who are like parents, who fuss at you for not doing your homework and make you wear proper clothes to school. And walk around with worried looks on their faces and talk in hushed voices after answering the phone. And even now, they know that "cancer" is a magic, but powerful word, and if they say, "My sister had cancer," people will pull back, and treat them in a way that isn't normal. And they've learned that "special" doesn't always mean "good."
We were a family already. But this has given another layer to that familydom. Which is probably why so many people laugh and cry at "Little Miss Sunshine," and think the movie was made just for them, because they have a completely crazy family that has gone through unique experiences, and know that even though their family is crazy and not the Bradys or the Cosbys, it's still tight, and loyal to each other, and willing to trade embarrassment to protect one of their own.
And the "2" ... Little Warrior herself. The child who acts fearless ... but washes her hands, every chance she gets. She knows what hand sanitizer is for. She knows what a stethoscope is for. She carries her syringes of medicines, three times a day, around to the people in her family, judiciously choosing which one gets the honor of giving her medicine. On vacation, it was "Bops." (Pops.) She wields it like a Queen allowing a privilege to one of her subjects. And she puts bandaids on her stuffed animals, admonishing them, "Shhh, shhhh."
Midnight, it is September 1st. September is "Childhood Cancer Awareness Month."