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Going public?

When is the right time to share? When is sharing too much? In our world of immediate gratification, reality stars and social media nothing is private anymore. We feel it's important, maybe our duty to share when what you're sharing may save someone else from pain and suffering. When my wife discovered two small masses on our daughter's belly, we assumed maybe she had a bowel obstruction or something similar. Nonetheless, Scotty insisted that we go to emergency at 11 PM on a Wednesday night. After the initial ultrasound and sitting in the emergency department for several hours the doctor came in, as my wife and daughter lie in bed and I sat in the armchair the first thing the Dr. said was "Well it looks like cancer." "WHAT?" Did she just say that, after one ultrasound and with my daughter laying right there within ear-shot? My wife and I went numb, and Jen popped up with her eyes glaring. After we collected ourselves, we begin a four-day hospital stay with an onslaught of test. The waiting and wondering were maniacal. For four days the world stood still and yet kept right on rolling. We had to wait another week for the results of Jen's biopsy. Her diagnosis was Wilms tumor a children's kidney cancer. Everything felt like a bad dream. Over the course of two months we've cried, we laughed, and we reexamined all our beliefs. Why would this happen to our baby girl? Why now? We don't drink, or smoke, or use drugs and we cook most meals. We are reasonably health conscious, and we work diligently not to expose our family to anything unsafe.

What I've learned is that God affords everyone an assignment. Within that assignment, there may be factors that bend and shape us along the way. Many of our setbacks are setups for our triumph as we move through life. With that said, no one deserves to face cancer let alone the most vulnerable among us, "our children." Our faith has grounded my wife and I along this path. Prayer and meditation have stilled racing thoughts and fears. There have been many hills to climb through this journey, and there are many to come. Jenesis has been a true warrior through it all. Even when she's afraid, she still wants to see everything procedure and needle poke. She is acutely aware of herself. Her strength strengthens both of us. When her chemo began to thin her hair, she chose to control the situation and cut it off. She faces every step with assertiveness and curiosity. After talking things over as a family, we decided that we are going to own our journey and control our narrative. Jenny had the final say, and we chose to tell the story of how she "beat" cancer!

Help us raise awareness and make our story a rare one.

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