On Wednesday, September 21st, my daughters, Grace and Fiona, are going to shave my head. Their mom’s bald head won’t be a new sight for them. I shaved with the inaugural team of the 46 Mommas Shave for the Brave in LA last September in an effort to raise awareness of pediatric cancer and help fund a cure.Â We continue to work toward our $1 million goal and 46 new Mommas — all moms of kids with cancer — will come together this year in DC at Union Station and go bald.
That’s right. All these moms have kids with cancer. On average in the US, 46 kids are diagnosed each weekday. Grace (9) was diagnosed with brain cancer in September 2007.Â Her excellent treatment, at Hasbro and Mass General, was successful.Â This month we celebrate 4 years since diagnosis. Her MRIs are now 6 months apart, and Grace can enjoy her days as a hard working 3rd grader at Paul Cuffee School in Providence.
There are emotional and physical and cognitive struggles ahead of Grace, no doubt, but we think of her as one of the lucky ones.Â She is here with us.Â Cancer is the #1 disease killer of children, and sadly, that statistic is well-represented among the Mommas coming together in DC.
On Thursday, the morning after the shave, my family will go to Capitol Hill with Mommas, to share our stories with our Congressional leaders, ask them to pass the Creating Hope Act, and remind them that the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) federal budget was $4.6 billion. Of that, breast cancer received 12%, prostate cancer received 7%, and all 12 major groups of pediatric cancers combined received less than 3%.
This experience in DC will be powerful. As the only shavee from RI, I will try to do us proud.
The 46 Mommas would love your support.
To learn more about the Mommas, please visit: www.46mommas.com and friend us on Facebook.
View the shave live:Â http://www.ustream.tv/channel/bald-moms-rock-46-mommas