Monday, June 3, 2013

Hope for Calle - We Will Never, Ever Give Up

Let me  introduce you to Calle.

Caroline (Calle as she is known to her friends) was very excited to start kindergarten, but she began the school year by coming home very tired each day, but then most of her classmates came home the same way. She started exhibiting some varied symptoms - squinting to see, slurring a bit, falling more often than usual and having drastic mood swings. 

Her mom took her to a few doctors who all agreed that these symptoms were simply due to the fatigue from her new kindergarten routine. One afternoon in November, Calle was in her dancing class and began to have trouble standing up. Her parents rushed her into Boston Children's Hospital where they immediately ran some tests including an MRI.

In the wee hours of the morning, Calle's parents were brought into a room where they found several doctors waiting to speak with them. They were completely unprepared for what they heard next. 

The MRI clearly showed the cause of Calle's problems. Calle was diagnosed with DIPG (Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma) which is an inoperable malignant brain tumor located at the brain stem. Calle's dad asked the oncologist how bad this diagnosis was and the answer he received was "the worst". DIPG is a disease that affects children usually between the ages of 5 and 9. The life expectancy is less than 1 year and the survival rate is 2%. Calle's prognosis is quite dire, but thousands of people (from so many places!) have been continuously praying for a miracle.

This Sunday, June 9th, is the PMC South Shore Kids Ride for Cancer.

Many of you are familiar with the Pan Mass Challenge, where teams ride bikes across Massachusetts to raise funds and awareness to fight cancer. 

The PMC South Shore Kids Ride is a way kids can participate in raising awareness and funds, too - except they don't ride across the state to do it!  :)   The ride is in Hingham, MA, at the Wompatuck State park.  There are several loops kids can choose to ride, depending on their age and ability.

We have put together a team for Calle - called, of course, Team Calle.  If you are local and have a kid between the ages of 3-15 you can sign up to ride for Calle.  Her Aunt Sharon is Team Captain, and her brother Connor is riding.  We are putting this team together without much time - because of extenuating circumstances we were only able to form the team on Friday.  PLEASE - if you're local - sign your child up to ride for Team Calle.  Registration is only $25.  The ride starts at 9am, but riders need to be there to register by 8:15am (keep reading to see the link on where to register).

Connor is riding the "Challenger" loop (4 miles), but when you register you will see other options for your child to ride (easier and harder - the only loop that allows training wheels is the "Toddler" loop).

If you can't ride but want to donate - all funds go to Dana Farber's Jimmy Fund - there is a page on this site just for Team Calle, and you will see a place to click to donate or click on "join this team" to sign your child on to ride for Calle.   To view the link to Calle's page, click HERE.

Most people are touched by cancer directly or indirectly at some point in their lives.  Kids, especially, can be left feeling powerless in the face of this disease. 

But this day?  This day is all about how they CAN help, how they CAN make a big difference.  Please, please register your child to ride if you're local, and donate if you're not. 

You can also register to volunteer (they are desperate for Route Guides) by clicking on this link HERE.

Here is a video made for Calle - you can also read more about her story at the website Hope for Caroline.

We will never, ever give up.

1 comment:

  1. Ellie,

    Check out the Magical Moon Foundation located in Marshfield. The founder is awesome and may be able to make Calle days brighter.