Embracing Mother’s Day with hope and a grateful heart

Hope and resilience in the face of childhood cancer

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  •  2 min

DJ was treated at St. Jude Children's Hospital for soft tissue cancer

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On this Mother’s Day like every one before, I am grateful I have my four children by my side. I’m thankful I can hug and laugh with them, pour love and time into them and create memories. 

I cherish every moment. I don’t take anything for granted. You see, my son, DJ, was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer three years ago. He is undergoing round 4 in his fight against rhabdomyosarcoma, a soft tissue cancer. 

We arrived at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in May 2021 wondering what the future held for DJ. At St. Jude, we immediately felt a sense of HOPE. We met friendly faces in his team of caregivers and in workers at the Kay Kafe cafeteria on campus. St. Jude has been the place for us where hope resides. DJ has undergone surgery, many rounds of chemotherapy treatments, physical therapy, radiation therapy and much more.

DJ was treated at St. Jude Children's Hospital for soft tissue cancer

Tanisha helping DJ get ready for his senior prom

In 2023, we thought he had beaten cancer, and we took a trip to a wolf sanctuary. When we returned, we found out that DJ had relapsed. It was a major blow, but we are resilient. And my warrior fights on. 

As he does, we will continue to rejoice each life milestone and ordinary moments with purpose. DJ is a senior in high school. He just had his prom where he wore a blue tux and looked so handsome. Prior to him leaving with his date, we had a big sendoff at his godmother’s house. We were filled with joy and happiness.  

High school graduation is next and then college. He is doing well. His future is bright. On this Mother’s Day, that is my real gift.

And this gift wouldn’t be possible without St. Jude and its donors. They have given me these years with my son. These special moments. I’m blessed.  

Thank you.

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