Order amid Chaos

Jessica Cardini
Support System

My husband John and I read everything we could get our hands on about leukemia. We decided that the more we educated ourselves about cancer the better our chances were of winning the war. But I also knew that whatever the outcome, faith in God would help us deal with it. We also had a great support system. It started with our family. Our son John had to grow up pretty fast in our absence. He excelled in school getting straight A's. And for his efforts, his father went out of his way to continue coaching his local hockey team and trying to keep our children's active lives as normal as possible. We could not have done any of this without the help of family and friends.

John even reached out to Ocean of Love, a support group who helps families that have children with cancer. Ocean of Love was there to give us emotional support and financial aid. It can get pretty expensive going back and forth to New York for Jessica's treatments. It was also important to make sure all four of our children felt special and loved during this time; cancer affects the entire family not just the child being treated. We have come a long way since Jessica was first diagnosed. It wasn't easy but we worked together. Our children have learned to appreciate and love each other, because it truly is a gift that we are here together. We stressed a positive outlook for our family, and when things got too overwhelming we reached out for help. I want to thank everyone who was there along the way, friends, family and even people who I never met prayed for our family.

Today Jessica is 11 years old and enjoys playing on a local soccer team. She is a straight A student at East Dover Elementary and is a Girl Scout. She has grown to be a thoughtful and caring young lady and enjoys reading to her younger brother and sister. I am so very proud of all her accomplishments. Our children are our greatest resource toward our future.

The community should stand together to make sure that they grow up in a safe and clean environment. I think that putting filtration on all our wells and cleaning up the superfund sites is not too much to ask for. Our children deserve the right to live a life free of cancer.

Lori Cardini