Sometime last spring or summer you connected my sister Sarah with Sue. Both girls were diagnosed with the rare cancer Clear Cell Sarcoma. Unfortunately, Sarah and Sue lost their fight and passed away about 40 days apart . They didn’t have a lot of time to really get to know each other but they definitely reached out to each other as they were the only people they knew of with their kind of cancer. I know that they found comfort in talking to someone who “got it.” I tried my best to understand my sister (we all did!) and what was going through her mind, but there’s no way I could have understood. The same as my friends now have no idea how I much I miss my sister and how much it actually hurts to know she’s gone. But, both women understood each other. It was so wonderful that they had a chance to connect with someone else who had similar feelings.
What has also been so amazing is that our mom has really connected with Sue’s mom. They have emailed so much since the end of the summer when things really started to look bad for both girls. My mom supported her in Sue’s last days, and Sue’s mom guided my mom shortly after when Sarah was at the end. They still email regularly and find so much comfort in someone understanding what this is like. It’s almost like they have this personal grief support group.
An organization like Imerman Angel’s is so amazing because you help people find others they normally would never cross paths with, and then they help ease some each others pain and loneliness. Sarah loved IA. In fact, after she came off of chemo and was waiting for a clinical trial to accept her, she made sure she volunteered at your booth at the Chicago Marathon. She was not feeling well at the time, but helping others made her feel better in a different way.
I just thought you should know what wonderful work you are doing! I know she probably didn’t have time to let you know how she felt about IA as the end came very unexpectedly and quickly. But, I know what IA meant to her and I know how I feel about it, so I wanted to share this with you. You probably don’t even know of all those who you have helped. I may not have been directly involved in the one-on-one support, but two of the most important people in my life found comfort from your organization and that helps ease some of my pain from watching them hurt so much. Thank you for doing what you do, and please know that what you work so hard for every day really is worth it and really does make a difference!