Dear E: An Open Letter to a Patient I Loved and Lost

First Broad Street Team 
EK In the Back Row

Dear E, I think I have been crying for five days. I know what you are saying "Come on kiddo! Smile....It ain't THAT bad..." I see your smile. But it is THAT bad. You are gone. And no one knows why. All we know is that one second you were on this earth and the next you were taken from so many who loved you. Can I say that to you now? I LOVED you. I LOVED your heart, your spirit, your kindness. I LOVED how deeply you cherished Lori and your amazing kids. I LOVED how you NEVER had a bad thing to say about anybody. But mostly I LOVED you for believing in me. Remember that first day we … [Read more...]

Fall vs Fail: The Difference Is in the “I”

"Knee, meet this brick."

I have never really been accident prone. Childhood circa 1970's-1980's: no broken bones and only one serious laceration (forget the stitches, this one was life-threatening.) Then this year happened. In the last few months I have had three falls, two of them MAJOR. The first happened while I was running with my beloved running team at 5 am. I was going faster than my normal pace and it was dark. Running fast in the dark was outside my comfort zone. My toe caught an uneven brick and down I went...hard..on said brick. My left knee burst open like a watermelon thrown from a rooftop. … [Read more...]

Every Book Starts With a Story

Team CMMD Then

When I was in 4th grade, I got a D in math. I felt like a failure. To me, math knowledge equated with smarts. And, naturally smarts equated with success. At 9 years old, I was doomed to a life without success. Three years later my seventh grade English teacher read one of my essays to the class. She cried a little at one part. At 12 years old, I knew I was destined to write a book. I spent my life thinking about this yet unwritten book until three decades later when I figured something out; wanting to write a book is NOT the same as having a story to tell. My story began on New … [Read more...]

The Day I Almost Died

When I was fourteen, I sat in the back of a school bus frantically trying to hide the fact that I was wearing the same cotton pantsuit for the third time that week. I felt as though everyone on that bus was laughing at me. I know now that they weren't but my perspective was a hot mess. I felt like an outsider, a failure, a giant loser. I was not pretty or funny. I was not talented in any way. I was "just" smart. I didn't want to be smart. I wanted to be pretty. I wanted to be funny. I wanted to play varsity anything. I wanted to have a different outfit for every day of the week. That day … [Read more...]

Philadelphia Magazine: Health Hero Challenge

frmReadMail_Attachment.aspx

Being nominated for Philadelphia Magazine's Health Hero is an honor of which I feel completely unworthy. Not only are my fears innumerable, they are at times pathologic and include an irrational fear of escalators (really.) So, I have decided to dedicate the 30 days leading up to #BWPhealthhero voting to TRUE heroes. Since we are in the midst of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, I am asking you to nominate childhood cancer fighters. These kids are as bold and brave as they come. I will profile one child every day till voting opens. After discussing with our BOD, we have decided … [Read more...]