A Gold White House. I Will Not Stop Begging. Or Crying.


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Ronan. I had no idea getting 25k signatures on our petition was going to be so hard. I mean, it shouldn’t be, right? It seriously is something that takes 60 seconds. I have been working non-stop on this and I know a ton of other people have as well. Again, thank you to all who have signed and who are harassing everyone they know about it. This has to work. It is time The White House steps up and starts to recognize Childhood Cancer. It should have happened a long time ago. I’m still blown away that the awareness has slipped through the cracks. Did you know that George Bush Senior, had a daughter that died from leukemia? I believe she was almost 4, just like you Ronan, when she died. Heartbreaking, right? Heartbreaking, but you would think from that, something fucking amazing would have been done, that would have put childhood cancer on the map where it does not get ignored. We had not one, but two President Bushes that could have done something huge, but as far as I can tell, not much was done. So here we sit now, begging for a petition to get the signatures it needs in hopes that The White House will say a BIG, FAT, YES to lighting that White House up GOLD for the month of September. This is not something we should have to beg for. I begged for the life of you, Ronan. Begging for signatures just seems silly, but as I said before, I will do whatever it takes.

I really hope President Obama, takes a stand on this. I really hope the First Lady decides to get involved because trust me, kids are not dying left and right due to childhood obesity. Do kids with childhood obesity have to go through harsh chemo treatments meant for adults? No, they do not. Kids that are diagnosed with cancer get to not only go through awful chemo, but these lovely things as well… Let’s add scary radiation to the list where they are left in a tube, all alone, not understanding a thing. Also, extreme fatigue where they no longer get to be a child. Constant flu-like symptoms such as runny noses, chills, and coughs. Pain that they cannot fix such as headaches, muscle pain, stomach pains, or even temporary nerve damage. Pokes, prods, riding an IV pole around a hospital instead of a bicycle. Mouth, gum and throat sores. Nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, constipation, diarrhea, bloody noses that cannot be controlled due their platelets being wiped out. Skin changes such as blisters, peeling, and swelling. Feeding tubes.  Weight loss or gain. Lovely hair loss which leaves them to feel weird and different from everyone else around them. Kidney and bladder problems. Anemia, which destroys all types of healthy blood cells and leaves the child often pale, speeds up their heartbeat, and shortness of breath. Blood Clotting problems where everything bleeds non-stop including a small scratch or bloody gums when they brush their teeth. Neutropenia, which leaves the child with an immune system so shot, that they often cannot fight off infections. Let’s not forget all the surgeries that come into play. Stem cell transplants, bone marrow transplants, bone marrow aspirations, the awful port changes, nightly shots to boost their immune system. The endless amount tears, worries, and pain. And those are just the physical symptoms. Don’t forget all the psychological damage that is done as well. Not to mention being torn away from their siblings, parents, friends, and the extreme stress it adds to the family who have no choice but to put on a strong face when all they really want to do is crumble up and die.

Sometimes, cancer treatments can cause permanent changes to a child’s growing body. These long-term side effects can include damage to the heart, lungs, brain, nerves, kidneys, thyroid gland, or reproductive organs. Kids may experience issues such as delayed cognitive development, growth problems, and infertility. In some cases, those who’ve received certain types of chemotherapy are at higher risk of developing a second type of cancer later in life. Let’s not forget that every single day, 7 kids just up and die from childhood cancer and every single day 46 kids will be diagnosed. Let’s not forget, that this could happen to anyone and childhood cancer is the NUMBER ONE DISEASE KILLER IN KIDS. But I totally understand why we have taken such a stance on childhood obesity.

So, here I am, begging for signatures for a petition that I don’t even know The White House will say yes to. Here I sit, with tears streaming down my face not ONLY for the loss of you, but of so many others as well. All I am asking for is for childhood cancer to be as recognized as all the other cancers out there. All I am asking for is for the color GOLD to be as recognized as the color PINK. Just make it equal. Why isn’t it already? These are kids for crying out loud! They should not be thrown into a life of being “fighters,” because nobody is fighting for them.

 NATIONAL CHILDHOOD CANCER AWARENESS MONTH, 2012

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
Every year, thousands of children across America are diagnosed with cancer    an often life threatening illness that remains the leading cause of death by disease for children under the age of 15.  The causes of pediatric cancer are still largely unknown, and though new discoveries are resulting in new treatments, this heartbreaking disease continues to scar families and communities in ways that may never fully heal.  This month, we remember the young lives taken too soon, stand with the families facing childhood cancer today, and rededicate ourselves to combating this terrible illness.
While much remains to be done, our Nation has come far in the fight to understand, treat, and control childhood cancer.  Thanks to ongoing advances in research and treatment, the 5 year survival rate for all childhood cancers has climbed from less than 50 percent to 80 percent over the past several decades.  Researchers around the world continue to pioneer new therapies and explore the root causes of the disease, driving progress that could reveal cures or improved outcomes for patients.  But despite the gains we have made, help still does not come soon enough for many of our sons and daughters, and too many families suffer pain and devastating loss.
My Administration will continue to support families battling pediatric cancer and work to ease the burdens they face.  Under the Affordable Care Act, insurance companies can no longer deny health coverage to children because of pre existing conditions, including cancer, nor can they drop coverage because a child is diagnosed with cancer.  The law also bans insurers from placing a lifetime dollar limit on the amount of coverage they provide, giving families peace of mind that their coverage will be there when they need it most.  And as we work to ensure all Americans have access to affordable health care, my Administration will continue to invest in the cutting edge cancer research that paves the way for tomorrow’s breakthroughs.
This month, we pay tribute to the families, friends, professionals, and communities who lend their strength to children fighting pediatric cancer.  May their courage and commitment continue to move us toward new cures, healthier outcomes, and a brighter future for America’s youth.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 2012 as National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.  I encourage all Americans to join me in reaffirming our commitment to fighting childhood cancer.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty first day of August, in the year of our Lord two thousand twelve, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-seventh.
BARACK OBAMA

Please, President Barack Obama, stay true to your words. Please fight this fight with us. A change cannot happen without you. Please do so much more than just some words on a piece of paper.

Ronan. I love you. I miss you with every aching bone in my body. I am so sorry this is not fixed already. I am so sorry you had to die from something that is so awful and continues to be ignored. I promise to fix this for you. I promise to never stop fighting for you. I love you with everything that I am. Forever.

xoxo

I won’t stop posting this petition until it gets the 25k signatures that it needs. This is our only chance. If we don’t get this passed this time, the required signatures goes up to 100k. This is not just another thing of spam that comes your way. Signing this can help this cause. Please. I will do anything. I will shave my fucking head. I will eat worms. I will stand on a street corner and whore myself out, but I don’t think my husband would like that very much. I will jump out of a plane but for those of you that know me, you know I would do that for fun, anyway. Oh, and plane jumping might be off-limits for now due to the safety of Poppy a.k.a. Little PopStar.

Please, just sign and share. Go to your local news stations. Beg with no shame, just like the way I am. Or do the complete opposite. Read this, do nothing, and go about your self-absorbed ways. I have enough tears, that I can spare them to cry for you as well.

https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/light-white-house-gold-month-september-honor-pediatric-cancer-fighters-and-bring-light-cause/syV6M6wX

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I know this picture is hard to look at. But imagine how it felt for him and for us, as his parents. He was 3 years old. The fact that nothing has changed for childhood cancer is unacceptable. The fact that he had to go through all of this as so many others are and will, is something I will not stand for. Please do not just go about your day. Please help us do something. I am not going to stop fighting for my child, ever. He is worth every painful thing I feel, think or see. He is worth all of this pain and suffering. It reminds me of why I cannot give up. I will not curl up and die or go on with my life ever. He is my life.

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120 Comments

  1. Thank you for always being so brutally honest about the toll of Childhood Cancer – people have got to stop thinking this is not a problem. I cry almost every day when I think about Ronan, Ty, Cole, Tucker, Kai, Lane…all the other beautiful souls that have been taken from us, and all the beautiful souls that are fighting right now!!! I’ll keep posting, I’ll keep begging. I’m sharing this post and praying my friends will read it and join in the fight. Hugs to you all.

    Reply
  2. Corrie Cieplik

     /  January 24, 2013

    Just signed and shared the petition on my FB page.

    I have followed your blog from the beginning and admire all you have done and are doing. <3

    ~Corrie

    Reply
  3. It better be a sure as hell yes.

    Reply
  4. Glenda

     /  January 24, 2013

    RoMama,

    I’ve been posting on FB and twitter! I’ve been begging because no child deserves this!
    This breaks my heart so many times over!
    Thinking of you and Rockstar Ro!
    Always RoLove xo

    Reply
  5. donna

     /  January 24, 2013

    In all honesty, I think someone like Michelle Obama (not to pick on her personally) as a person in the public eye, needing to perform some kind of public service, would pick childhood obesity, centering around growing vegetable gardens, etc., instead of bringing awareness to the number of children dying from cancer, because it is easier. They want to ‘make a difference’, without really getting their feet wet.

    Reply
  6. shamrock09

     /  January 24, 2013

    I am racking my brains trying to think every day of ways i can get some awareness of this petition in ireland. Tomorow morning i will be calling texting mailing all our top radio morning shows… please people please please sign this!!!!

    Baby Ro must be so proud of his Mama…

    Can i also beg this on behalf of our little neuroblastoma poster child in Ireland Lilly Mae Morrison… Sweet sweet baby girl who just loves ballet and dinosaurs and is being tortured by this sick illness.. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE SEND ALL POSITIVE THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS HER WAY…. Her Mama cant live without her!!!!

    Reply
    • Jessica

       /  January 24, 2013

      Oh my god…she is adorable. I loved how the whole family had bald heard, I don’t like the reason they do though. This is so sad, these little kids need the funding and the support. So sad.

      Reply
      • Shamrock09

         /  January 24, 2013

        I know Jessica so sweet!! Another brave child who shouldn’t have to grow up so fast. She calls her cancer an owie too just like ronan did!!

        Xxxxx

    • Jessica

       /  January 24, 2013

      Aww, that’s cute. Sorry, I meant heads before. I wish no child had to go through something as traumatic as cancer. It’s so sad. Best of luck to Lily-Mae.

      Reply
  7. It better be a hell yes. I can’t believe no one sees this as a bigger problem than child-hood obesity.
    Prayers and love for you all.

    Reply
  8. Jenn

     /  January 24, 2013

    Oh Maya…I’m so sorry you have to beg people to sign this, it’s truly unbelievable! I even had my husband share it on his facebook and he couldn’t believe that it hasn’t reached a 25K mark yet. It’s unbelievable! I will keep pushing people to sign it, even though it shouldn’t take a push to sign something so simple yet something so powerful. I think the last picture is heartbreaking, but maybe that’s what people need to see in order to actually make a difference. I’m sorry Maya. I do love “Little PopStar”.

    Reply
  9. Just signed it and I’m telling people about it at work RIGHT NOW. :)

    xoxoxo
    Sarai

    Reply
  10. shamrock09

     /  January 24, 2013

    Elton John gave permission for this song to be used in order to raise awareness and funding for neuroblastoma…

    If Lilly Mae does not deteriorate they will use the money to donate to neuroblastoma research!!

    Please gorgeous Ronan watch over Lilly Mae in Ireland xxxxxxx

    type her name into youtube and hear her cute cute voice.. she is in isolation at moment for 30 days just her and her Mama… THIS IS NOT FAIR!!!! Her facebook page for anyone who wants to send a message is Tiny Dancer a song for Lilly Mae

    Reply
  11. Hana Miller

     /  January 24, 2013

    Just signed the petition! Amazing work you are doing on behalf of all children. Thank you.

    💗 Hana

    Reply
  12. Nat

     /  January 24, 2013

    I’m not from the usa, I’ve got no idea how things are done there, or how hart people fight for the things they want, but i’m so sad, I hate people so much sometimes. For the first time I saw Ronan, something inside me change. I swear. And I can not understan why people can’t do a thing as simple as sing a petition.

    ( i don’t know if i had expres my feeling right in english so even if you don’t understan what i’m going to say in Català right now , i’m gonna say it , En ronan ha canviat una vida)

    Reply
  13. Jennifer

     /  January 24, 2013

    Just signed and posted on my facebook page! You are an amazing person! You are constantly in my thoughts!

    Reply
  14. Tiffany

     /  January 24, 2013

    I am a little embarrased to admit that I have been sitting on the petition page hitting refresh like a crazy person watching the numbers go up… But in the time it took me to read this blog post, 43 more people signed. This can be done!

    Reply
    • Des Jordan

       /  January 25, 2013

      Don’t be embarassed Tiffany – I’ve been doing the same
      thing for the last 2 days!! :) I’m going crazy sending this out to
      anyone, everyone, TV, newspapers, whatever it takes. It’s GOING to
      happen! Maya – you are the worlds most amazing, inspiring, greatest
      rockstar ever.

      Reply
  15. Signed it a week or so ago. Been sharing on FB daily. Thank you for fighting for all these poor children. I love you and Ronan. Amazing people you are!

    Reply
  16. Nicole

     /  January 24, 2013

    Everyone who reads this blog needs to take 2 minutes to sign this petition. If you haven’t already, stop what you are doing and do it! Pass it along to every last person you can. Ro deserves this, every child living with, or who’s lost their battle to this disgusting beast deserves it!
    Maya- you are a force to be reckoned with:) hugs to you. Love to Ro always.

    Reply
  17. Ashley

     /  January 24, 2013

    I sent an email with the link and begged everyone!!!

    Reply
  18. Rachel Cochran

     /  January 24, 2013

    Posted petition link to the mix 96.9 Facebook page. Hoping they’ll mention it on the air.

    Reply
  19. Sarah

     /  January 24, 2013

    I have been a faithful reader for over a year, and have never commented as I feel there are never the right words….You are FUCKING amazing! Thank you for all that you do you are truly an inspiration to so many, and I know you have changed my life. I have shared and passed along to everyone I know and will continue to do so until you reach your goal. Please dont ever give up we will always be here to support you and Ro. (and the rest of your amazing family) We will prove Woody wrong!

    PS. I only saw 1 chin on your TV special ;)

    Reply
  20. Katrina

     /  January 24, 2013

    We need Obama’s email address so we can send this directly to him!

    Reply
    • You can send an email to President Obama on the White House site. It doesn’t really go to him but his people get it. Send one to the first lady too. You can do that there also.

      Reply
  21. Julia

     /  January 24, 2013

    Maya, I cant sign the petition because I’m in Germany but I posted on some of my friends websites who are in the U.S and I keep my fingers crossed that you will get all the needed signatures and you will I’m sure.
    Julia

    Reply
    • Maria

       /  January 24, 2013

      Doesn’t say on the web site you have to live in the US only that you have to be 13 years old. Zip code is optional.

      Reply
  22. sarah32x

     /  January 24, 2013

    I have been a faithful reader for over a year, and have never commented as I feel there are never the right words….You are FUCKING amazing! Thank you for all that you do, you are truly an inspiration to so many, and I know you have changed my life. I have shared and passed along to everyone I know and will continue to do so until you reach your goal. Please dont ever give up we will always be here to support you and Ro. (and the rest of your amazing family) We will prove Woody wrong!

    PS. I only saw 1 chin on your TV special ;)

    Reply
  23. Claudia

     /  January 24, 2013

    Hey Maya, my husband and I signed this petition long time ago and I’m now keeping track and praying that we reach 25K signatures. And the picture of Ronan is hard to look at but it’s reality… precious babies are dying everyday. Let’s stand up and say FU cancer.

    Reply
  24. Ashleigh

     /  January 24, 2013

    Shared on Facebook and through email for about the 20th time this week. I have complete faith that this petition will meet its goal! We can do this… Much love to you and your family, Maya. <3 Ashleigh

    Reply
  25. jessica

     /  January 24, 2013

    oh my god…that picture. so damn sad. this shouldnt be happeing…just sign the god damn petition already.

    Reply
  26. Katrina

     /  January 24, 2013

    I don’t know if this will work or what it will do, but I just sent the link to this blog entry to the White House. I hope you don’t mind, Maya. But this is ridiculous and it needs to happen. Maybe if we all do the same thing, he will listen to us. :)

    Reply
  27. DAnielle

     /  January 24, 2013

    Just sent it to everyone that I know in the USA, being from Canada I am not authorized to sign the petition as you all know – very unfair as you would for sure reach your goal if your followers in other countries could join in the fight.
    Don’t ever stop Maya.
    RoLove forever.
    Danielle

    Reply
    • Maria

       /  January 24, 2013

      Doesn’t say on the web site you have to live in the US only that you have to be 13 years old. Zip code is optional.

      Reply
    • Emilie

       /  January 25, 2013

      Danielle, I am also from Canada and I sign it without any
      trouble :) Try again!!!! RoLove..xx

      Reply
  28. Susan

     /  January 24, 2013

    I signed and forwarded on to another mom with a 5 year old girl with cancer – hope she can connect to her network of friends and other parents of kids with cancer!

    Mom of 6, including Jacob, who died at 6 hours old from a Congenital Heart Defect

    Reply
  29. Jen Brianas

     /  January 24, 2013

    Maya, I’m not giving up! I have shared and emailed, and asked people to share. I feel like going on Facebook and saying “fuck you if you read this and don’t sign” but I’m not sure it will help the cause. What about Taylor Swift! She must have a million twitter followers, she loves you and Ronan! Can’t you or someone at the foundation ask her to help. She could just share the link.

    I really want it to happen, for Ronan, for my 2 year old niece fighting leukemia, for Brooke who has relapsed neurblastoma and for all the kids fighting this disease.

    Reply
  30. Laura

     /  January 24, 2013

    Hi Maya, I hope you reach your goal. I tried to sign again, but it only allows one signature per person apparently. I am going through cancer treatment right now and realize how tough and horrible it would be for a child, so I am hoping this passes in the next few days. I admire you so much!!!!

    Reply
  31. Stephanie

     /  January 24, 2013

    Signed it and posted it on my facebook wall with a link to Ro’s page! You WILL get the signatures!

    Reply
  32. Isabelle

     /  January 24, 2013

    Maya, I really think we can do this! I may not have an FB, Twitter, or Instagram (Lame Me), but I am trying to spread awareness. I just ordered the purple, sparkly Rockstar Ronan Tee, and I can’t wait to rock it at school! It made my day when you called Poppy your PopStar, I thought it was so sweet, and it kinda startled me, in a good way. I swear, I’m ready to hack into other peoples’ emails, and sign for them! This lack of awareness is ridiculous! My dream is to one day work as a doctor in your Ronan Thompson Neuroblastoma Care & Research Center. It will be built one day. If that’s what it takes for people to help out. I was on YouTube, watching various childhood cancer videos, and it made me cry, just watching all their beautiful angel faces getting tortured. There was one family that said that their little girl was in a better place, and I automatically thought, No, she’s not! If she’s not with her parents, she’s not in a better place! I read a comment under Ronan (TS), and some asshole said that ‘Taylor has no talent, she only writes about guys, Maya Thompson wrote this song!’ I really wanted to kick their ass to next week! Sending love <3

    Reply
  33. Jenn

     /  January 24, 2013

    Hey Maya – I have never posted but read all the time. Just wanted to say my entire workplace signed today and I literally emailed every Senator and Congressman in the State of NJ that I could find. I asked them not only to sign this petition but to also use whatever clout they have to get the message out there and get the white house and the government doing more. I have done this on other issues and it actually has gotten responses so let’s hope with something as important as our kids and cancer that someone steps up! the signatures are coming in so I think you will be able to do it!

    Reply
  34. Jaime H.

     /  January 24, 2013

    That picture :( sweet little Ro. Makes me sad all over again. I signed, its so close now, over 18, 000!!! I believe it will get the signatures it needs! xoxo Maya!

    Reply
  35. terrie

     /  January 24, 2013

    I’ve posted the link to my fb again….I’m praying you meet this goal Maya! It has to be done and thank you for opening the eyes to so many to this disgusting disease that kills precious babies…I’m sorry I can’t do more…that picture of Ro breaks my heart .

    Reply
  36. Carolyn L

     /  January 24, 2013

    Yes, I wonder if Taylor could help! We are sharing like crazy.

    Reply
  37. megan thomas

     /  January 24, 2013

    I signed it, but I’m Australian, so not sure if my signature helps, althought reseach done in the USA will help people all over the world, so I do hope that international signatures count.

    this comment bothers me…..

    “Thanks to ongoing advances in research and treatment, the 5 year survival rate for all childhood cancers has climbed from less than 50 percent to 80 percent over the past several decades.”

    from what I have read, things are NOT as goot as this statement sounds ?

    If you can set aside just under an hour of your time and watch this video, the true facts are alot more alarming, and heartbreaking, and simply just unnacceptable…..

    http://www.thetruth365.org/

    Sadly, change will only happen if people push and fight and try so hard to make it happen.

    Reply
  38. Haley

     /  January 24, 2013

    Signed and shared and shared some more! Maya, you truly are a rockstar of a mama!

    Reply
  39. I just sent messages to CBS, ABC and NBC in LA plus KTLA who is pretty big in LA. Hopefully at least one of them will cover the story. Or even tweet it. It’s not like there’s a lot of signatures to go now. Under 7,000. This should be easy.

    Reply
  40. Haley

     /  January 24, 2013

    Signed, shared and shared some more! Maya, you truly are a rockstar woman!

    Reply
  41. Marissa

     /  January 24, 2013

    when was that picture of Ronan taken? Is that at the Ryan House? I’m so sorry

    Reply
  42. LB

     /  January 24, 2013

    I second the idea to ask Taylor to tweet it the link. She’s already shown she’s dedicated to the cause, and you’d have 100k signatures in 5 minutes, and it would probably be picked up by the gossip blogs. :)

    Reply
  43. safia

     /  January 24, 2013

    Hi !
    I’ve been following your website for a while now. I think you’re very strong, and you should keep fighting for this huge cause that everyone seems to be forgetting about, and for your son of course !
    I just signed the petition, and i hope you get your 25k signatures.
    Love from France :)

    Reply
  44. Tifani

     /  January 24, 2013

    I’m so irritated that it’s not alreay far passé the signatures it needs!! So crazy! I have shared this a lot and I just posted it the Steve Edwards FB page (local LA news cast anchor for GDLA) he has 5000 friends and I hope he actually reads it and encourages people to sign! I asked if he would mention I on air. Well see I guess! im rest to make 1000 new email addresses just to sign it again!!

    Tifani

    Reply
  45. Tifani

     /  January 24, 2013

    I know Taylor swift put it on her FB page but if she would tweet it everyday and ask people to sign… it would probably pass in a day!!

    Reply
  46. Helen

     /  January 24, 2013

    Maya, I just want to say that you are doing an amazing job…..you are such an inspirational woman and Ronan will be so proud.

    I will send out your link to all my friends so that they can sign the petition, you are right it shouldn’t be that hard to get the signatures. One look at the picture of your beautiful little boy should make people get their ass in gear.

    You said in a previous post that you may post the last picture of Ronan….do you think you will do this? Maybe some people need a real hard shock before they realise this is not acceptable that so many gorgeous kids are dying from this evil disease.

    Keep up the amazing work – we are all so proud.

    Oh and F U CANCER
    X

    Reply
  47. Jen Brianas

     /  January 24, 2013

    Maya, it’s Jen again! I am so not giving up the fight on this. It’s absurb that it isn’t happening easily but whatever, it will happen! I just wanted to let you know that I am on the CureSearch listserve. I just received an e-mail from them and thought why can’t they send it out! So I called the regional contact on the e-mail (I participated in a walk in September) and he said to send him the link and he will follow-up with their communications department. I already did this, I sent him the link, link to your blog and interview, and the Ronan Thompson Foundation. I know it’s another nonprofit but I cannot see any reason why they can’t share the petition. He didnt think it would be a problem at all. They have thousands of people on their listsever! I really hope this helps. We live 25 miles outside DC and I am planning on taking my 2 year old niece with leukemia to the White House in September when it is lit gold!!!!

    Reply
  48. Monique R.

     /  January 24, 2013

    I signed it! For your Ronan & all the children & families affected by childhood cancer! I shared on my FB page & hope it gets the word out more! God bless you & Poppy & your family.. your loyal reader. Monique R.

    Reply
  49. Jennifer Zimpfer

     /  January 24, 2013

    Hi Maya – I get emails every time you post a message to
    Ronan. They are very heartbreaking and inspiring at the same time.
    I have 150 in my contacts and sent the link to sign the petition to
    every single one of them. And asked if they would share it with
    others. It’s the least I could do – wish I could do more. Good
    luck. Jen Z – Brooklyn, NY
    ________________________________

    Reply
  50. I am a childhood cancer survivor and have just signed. It
    is awful. The whole experience is awful and one that no child
    should go through. The whole LACK OF FUNDING SITUATION IS FUC***G
    DISGRACEFUL! I have just signed the petition. I am also a Swiftie
    and have so much gratitude to you and also Taylor for bring
    awareness and a cure to light. Much love, Frankie #RoLove
    #FUCANCER

    Reply
  51. This September, the entire childhood cancer community wants
    to see the White House lit in GOLD to raise awareness National
    Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Just about as many children die
    from cancer as from guns in America. visit http://1.usa.gov/U0RkpH
    and sign the petition!

    Reply
  52. Cass

     /  January 24, 2013

    Every day that I’ve checked the petition, it seemed as if
    there was another thousand signatures added on every night. In the
    past day, the numbers have been rising fast! What is it, more than
    six thousand signatures since last night?! By this rate I wouldn’t
    be surprised if the goal was reached by tonight! You’re moving
    mountains, Maya. :)

    Reply
  53. Michael Pate

     /  January 24, 2013

    Maya, Thank you for this and all your posts; that picture
    will forever change my life..no kid should have to go through
    that…my boys are 8 and 3 and I cant even imagine how I would
    function. You and Woody are truely amazing people. I’ve been
    following your blog for a few months now and although it’s been
    real hard to read at times I’ve felt that it has made me a better
    man and father…..to be grateful and apprciative of the things in
    my life. In the spirt of gold….I will be making some changes this
    fall. You see for the last 3 years my son’s pee-wee football (I’m
    the coach) have honored breast cancer victim/survivors and awarness
    by wearing pink (socks, shoelaces, etc.) at our games in October
    (all teams do it from pee-wee on up). That all great and cool but
    that’s not good enough anymore, not now, the stakes are higher….I
    can do better…I have to, like you cancer can strike anyone’s
    child. I can’t coach my son’s team on any given October Saturday
    morning sporting my pink attire knowing that seven (7) kids will
    die that day. So during the whole month of September I will be
    sporting something gold and purple on the sidelines. Like I said
    before, you and Woody are truely amazing people! -Michael Pate
    Burleson Texas

    Reply
  54. Tricia Nelson

     /  January 24, 2013

    I AGREE!! I’ve been trying so hard to get the Moms in my
    Moms group here in Virginia to sign the petition.. Out of about 80
    I only convinced a handful to sign… most people just ignored my
    posts… everybody agrees it is worthwhile but no one seems to
    actually sign..it is driving me crazy… who wouldn’t take the time
    out to sign that petition?? But I will NOT give up.. I will
    continue to bug all my friends and family until they sign up..I’m
    going to speak about it at our next meeting and I hope enough of us
    together will get motivated and make a difference..

    Reply
  55. Maya,

    Reading your words I feel your desperation!! You’re right, this is bullshit!! I seriously thought we could find 25k in one day!! We will get this done!! First thing this morning I wrote Fox 10 and Wendy Williams on Facebook. I was able to write right on Wendy’s wall!! I’m going to keep writing, other fans may see it as well!! I’m going to write all of our other local news channels, except 15 of course:) My friends and family are sharing the link and asking others to so as well. I was thinking maybe if a number of us RoLovers wrote the same news channels and celebrities we might get a better response!! So if any of you are working on someone and want me to join in, please share!! I know we can make this happen!! This is bullshit, I know there is WAY more than 25k people who care about children dying everyday!! Some of you may find this funny, but even Charlie Sheen gives a shit about kids with cancer!! TMZ reported a couple months back that Charlie meet this cop who’s 10 year old daughter is battling cancer. He was so moved by it that he donated 75k to the family!! He said no parents should have to worry about anything besides their child. I don’t twitter or anything, but couldn’t we reach some of these people this this way!! I know I may be reaching here, but I’ll do anything I swear!!

    Reply
  56. i have been going crazy….spreading the word about the petition! it NEEDS to work!

    Reply
  57. J.A.N.

     /  January 24, 2013

    I’ve been sharing this with everyone I know, all over the internet, trying to get people to sign & share. I thought about writing to the local news stations… does anyone know if they take on stories that are not from the area? We’re almost down to 6,000 more needed, so it’s definitely making progress but I know we can’t afford to slow down the effort.

    Reply
    • I doubt it will matter if you’re not from Arizona:) Will you please write Fox 10 Phoenix? I just sent them my 2nd email for the day. I believe in the power of numbers!! I’m going to write channel 3 and 12 now. Thanks for helping!! I know all of us together can make this happen:)

      Reply
  58. Debra Stiles

     /  January 24, 2013

    I will share and pray you get. your miracle you are working so hard for. Sorry for you loss., truely.

    Reply
  59. You’ve got my signature and prayers! God bless!

    Reply
  60. Jen D.

     /  January 24, 2013

    Hi Maya,
    I have signed the petition, however live in Canada so whether or not it counts is yet to be determined.
    Never in my life have I ever commented on a blog, sent an email to a news site or celebrity or linked on Facebook….until now. I signed the petition way back when it was in the 1000s. Then went on my merry way. Because I am off work right now I had time to become a petition stalker, I check oh…about 25 times plus a day…no word of a lie. I know stats like, prior to Wednesday you had to get over 700 signatures a day to meet your target. As of yesterday you had to get 600 signatures a day to meet target. Last time I did that calculaton earlier today you were at 500, and i know that has decreased again. Wednesday morning you had 13345 signatures, you have increased by over 6000 in two days. Last weekend earned the least amount of signatures per day since its creation. The last time I did the calculation it was growing by 130 signatures per hour…I think that has gone up again. I have made your petition my hobby right now. I have emailed my friends, posted on Facebook, sent it to other people on Facebook, sent it to other bloggers that I read ( some who blog about neuroblastoma and some who do not) heck I even googled ‘neuroblastoma blogs’ and sent it to bloggers who I don’t read. Then I rested. Then you blogged again and added that picture of your poor baby. So I wrote a letter and emailed it to Ellen, Oprah, 60 minutes, MSNBC, CNN, Anderson360, Dateline, CTV, CTV MORNING, the Today Show, dr. Gupta, and The National. Right now I have time on my hands while I recuperate and that time has been given to you and your petition. I am not sure what I am going to do when it reaches the goal.
    If the people who have been affected by childhood cancer, who blog, Facebook, tweet and email could unite and work together to coordinate campaigns to create awareness together as a unified front your marketing would take the world by storm. I sent an email to the Ronan Thompson Foundation detailing my idea, another first for me.
    I swear I am not a crazy stalker lady. I am just a reader, have been for a while, who currently has time on her hands. If there is anything that I can do, email, write, organize please let me know. You have inspired me to move outside my comfort zone and become a voice. From what i read i am not the only one. You and Ronan and your love story have inspired us all. Ronan has been a true inspiration through his bravery. You have been an inspiration through your bravery, your guts to share your raw emotion, to bare your soul, and to be so damn determined to change the world. You once said you were leading a charmed life before cancer entered your world. I believe that you deserved that charmed life, you should have gotten it, you and Ronan should never of had to know childhood cancer. No one can inspire this many people, have such wonderful and loyal friends and not be a special person. Thank you for all you do. Thank you for not curling up in a ball, thank you for working to make this better. Thank you for sharing with us and inviting us to the fight.

    Reply
  61. Gendis Syari

     /  January 24, 2013

    You’re the most incredible person I’ve ever known. Please people, sign it :( let’s fight like a rockstar, like ronan!

    Reply
  62. Jen D.

     /  January 24, 2013

    Just re did the calculation and as of 7 pm ET there was an average of 184 signatures per hour today. Wow.

    Reply
  63. Wendy Ledford

     /  January 24, 2013

    Maya, You are a warrior princess. I know my niece Alexa would be so proud of all you are doing to bring awareness to this horrible disease. I signed the petition and shared w/all my facebook friends. I have been following your blog since the beginning too…and have not stopped praying for you. (In the meantime I also started praying for your poppy seed/PopStar.) Thank you for all that you are doing for these precious children…and the fight against neuroblastoma/childhood cancer. Love, Hugs and continued prayers from Atlanta GA.

    Reply
  64. Bethany

     /  January 24, 2013

    Please do not whore yourself or eat worms, Maya! We will do this & we will get to 25,000! Just got Governor of Delaware to share the petition so let’s hope we get some more DE signatures on there asap. I’m harassing everyone I know with it as well!!

    Reply
  65. Zoe Tighe

     /  January 24, 2013

    Signed and shared.

    Reply
  66. I’m gong to beg the 7900 people on The Blanket Fairy page on Facebook to do this. <3

    Reply
  67. karyn

     /  January 24, 2013

    how do i sign the petition?? i would love to help

    Reply
  68. Sherri

     /  January 24, 2013

    This petition will definitely get enough signatures and make it to the white house??
    I am wondering if there is anything else that we can do to bring awareness about this petition; to impress on the staff there how important that it be carried through. Is there an email address, address, specific contact, etc. that we can send an email or letter to stressing how important it is to light up the white house to raise awareness for childhood cancer.

    Please post the information if you have it as would love to send a heartfelt message, and am sure that everyone else reading this blog would do as well.

    Thanks for all that you do for this cause!!

    Reply
  69. Sherri

     /  January 24, 2013

    Oops!!! Did not mean to put question marks after white house. I meant to put exclamation marks!!!! The petition WILL make it to the white house!! (sorry)

    Reply
  70. Anne

     /  January 24, 2013

    I already posted to my facebook page, but didn’t see much response. I am also on The Bump and I am going to post the link there. I hope that gives it the last push it needs. It seems like so little to ask people to do, but engaging with our goverment is something that unsettles so many people. I will keep trying.

    Reply
  71. Helen

     /  January 24, 2013

    Hi Maya, I’ve been following you for a while and felt I had to comment now too. My 4 year old son is a NB warrior and want to thank you for carrying the torch for all of us. You are eloquent, determined and have already achieved so much. I have signed a few WH petitions for Childhood cancer and its always so frustrating that they never go anywhere. This one feels different & finally it might work. It seems like such a simple ask! I was hopeful for the petition asking for a pediatric oncologist to be added to the NCI board (I think Dena – truth365 -started that one) but maybe this one will give us some momentum. If we could harness the strength and passion from all the smaller foundations into ONE voice. Thank you again & keep up the good work!

    Reply
    • Jen D.

       /  January 24, 2013

      I had the same thought, if all the foundations got together and worked on getting the word out in the same way at the same time towards the same groups, it would be a really powerful voice. If they focused their energy towards the same tasks there is no way they could go unheard anymore.

      Reply
  72. Natalie

     /  January 24, 2013

    I swear I will fly to Arizona and you can pimp me out(you know, since you have Poppy on board) I don’t think my husband will like it either, so I don’t think I will tell him e whole truth. I am sharing as much as I can on FB and I cannot believe people aren’t signing. It pisses me off!!!! I know you are gonna get the signatures you need!!!! Love you Maya, Ro and the whole Thompson crew!!! Xoxoxo!!!! fuck you, cancer!!!!!!

    Reply
  73. Allison

     /  January 24, 2013

    Signature # 20,209
    For Maya. For Woody. For Liam. For Quinn. For Poppy Seed. For Ro Baby.For all the little babies that don’t get to snug with their mommas each and every night.

    Reply
  74. Deanna Lawrence

     /  January 24, 2013

    The last time I checked, we had less than 5,000 signatures to go! And today is the 23rd! I really think we are going to do this, Maya! I have posted the petition on my facebook page twice so far and emailed everyone I know, twice as well. I also contacted Yahoo in the hopes that they will run a story on it. They do all these human interest stories all the time!! Why not run something that could actually make a difference?

    Reply
  75. Things are going great now. I checked at noon today and you needed almost 7,000 signatures. Now it’s down to less than 4,800. Keep bugging people everyone. If you’re on Twitter make sure you tweet it a lot. Once isn’t enough.

    Reply
  76. Lynn Kanode

     /  January 24, 2013

    Hi Maya, I have been following your blog for awhile – but haven’t posted before. I am so so sorry about Ronan. What a beautiful child. I have volunteered with Make-A-Wish foundation for over 15 years, this is a passion of mine, to bring a smile to these kids and their families, until there is a cure and it is no longer necessary. My latest goal is to raise the awareness…the white house gold – the football teams wearing gold ribbons, the celebrities doing commercials, everything that is done with the pink ribbon, needs to be done with the gold ribbon! We HAVE to find a cure. I know too many angels that are up there playing with Ronan. My heart breaks. Anyway – I am pushing it on facebook – and also won’t stop until we reach our goal. Something interesting I thought about tonight…have you seen those kids on facebook – saying if we get 1 million likes – my parents will get me a puppy? Why is it that they had no trouble at all getting over 1 million likes, but we can’t seem to get people to take the extra few seconds it takes to sign this petition? We should have 1 million signatures without even trying. I don’t get it. Maya if I ever can do anything to help – don’t hesitate to contact me. Thank you for what you do for “our kids”!

    Reply
    • Lynn,

      Funny you mentioned the like my post for a puppy crap!! Earlier tonight I posted the petition and my Facebook wall again and said it’s sad that people can get 1 million likes for a puppy, but we don’t have out 25k yet!! I guess we’re thinking alike:) We are going to get that 25k I know it!!

      Reply
  77. LR

     /  January 24, 2013

    Maya, I signed the petition when you first put it up and shared it on Facebook. I don’t understand how you don’t have enough signatures yet… If any of your readers haven’t signed it, they should be ashamed. I just want you to know that i have been reading your blog for months now and am so sorry for your loss. Ronan is such a beautiful boy inside and out and I know you will always keep his legacy alive. I am a college student so I don’t have tons of money to donate, but I did make & send holiday cards to kids in the hospital and am looking to volunteer at my local children’s hospital. Both of these things are largely inspired by you and reading your blog because it made me realize how even the simplest act of kindness – a smile, a card, or a hug can make a sick kid or their family feel a little less sad. I believe so deeply in the journey you are on and I know you will accomplish all that you set out to. I’d say never give up on your fight, but I already know you never will. :)
    Ps. If Taylor Swift tweeted the petition, it’d probably get millions of signatures very quickly. Hopefully she’ll realize this before the 6th. Good luck! xoxo

    Reply
  78. annie

     /  January 24, 2013

    Hello, just a stranger here…but a loyal follower. I have been harassing as many people as I can to sign this petition.Most of the people I know are ignoring it, but every once and awhile someone tells me that they have signed. I know I am not getting a ton of signatures… I figured if there are a lot of people like me out that that only get a few additional signatures it can still become a big number!! SO I keep on harassing with that in mind. I see there were a lot of people that signed today. I think this can and will be done!!!

    Reply
  79. Cissy

     /  January 24, 2013

    I will post this on my FB page. I have over 1000 friends on it.

    Reply
  80. Kristin Lingrell

     /  January 24, 2013

    My husband and I signed the petition and I have it plastered on Facebook! Scott will be with a ton of friends this weekend and he’s going to ask them all to sign! I will do whatever I can to help you Maya! You covered the symptoms of chemo very well. It made me cry because it brought back memories I’ve tried to suppress. One symptom I had that I’ll never forget was bone pain. I would lay in bed, unable to sleep, sobbing quietly so my parents and sisters wouldn’t hear me begging God to take me and end my misery! I suffered from over 30 out of over 60 possible symptoms for the chemotherapy combo I was given, and while I’ll never forget any of my symptoms, bone and jaw pain stand out as the worst of my symptoms. While the memories may be painful, I was one of the lucky ones who survived childhood cancer, twice. I’m so damn sorry Ronan was not as fortunate. Best of luck with the petition! I loved the teacher that offered extra credit to her students if they sign–“brilliant” as you wrote! Love and hugs to you and yours, Kristin A. Lingrell

    Reply
  81. natalie

     /  January 24, 2013

    We will get this done for Ronan and all the other kids !!! i know we can do it.. i wont stop harrassing people until we reach 25k or someone calls the cops on me.j/k .:) im a loyal follower and admirer .You and your courage and dedication to this cause is an inspiration to me..

    best of luck with all you do and Poppy :)

    Reply
  82. Cynthia

     /  January 24, 2013

    Hi maya,
    I read everyone of your posts. You are such an amazing mother, I hope I can be half the mom you are! I am so sad that the 25000 signatures were not reached over night! It drives me crazy that some kids on facebook got over 1 million likes in less than 24hrs to get a damn puppy 25000 signatures cant happen over night for fucking childhood cancer??? Wtf is wrong with people. I have been sharing the link everyday, I know it will be reached it has to be! Thankyyou for helping me be a better mother everyday.

    Reply
  83. Noriko

     /  January 25, 2013

    George W was 7 when his sister Robin died. He was mad
    because they never told him she was dying . They were afraid to
    tell her. They were in Texas but Robin was treated at Sloan in NY.
    I think the head of Sloan was an uncle of HW Bush. Not even those
    connections saved her. Just read a book on the tremendous influence
    of former Presidents on current President. I think we should target
    the Bushes to influence Obama…. Also reading a great book by an
    Ivy League educated PhD and psychic/medium about life after death.
    I am convinced. The book is very well researched. Are you into that
    stuff at all? It brings me hope that I will be able to keep on
    living if NB cancer ends up taking my little girl someday.

    Reply
  84. Chris

     /  January 25, 2013

    Only 3500 to go Maya! We’re going to ROCK this petition. I
    promise you!!!! Get your party pants on! You are amazing.

    Reply
  85. Rebecca Briscoe

     /  January 25, 2013

    I very much agree with Ronan’s mommy. It breaks my heart
    that mommy and daddy’s have to loose their children or that these
    innocent little people have to experience this horror. Things that
    you as an adult hope to never ever in a million years have to
    experience. We must take a stance for childhood cancer. My thoughts
    and prayers are with you Ronan’s family. God Bless!

    Reply
  86. Deb George

     /  January 25, 2013

    Amen! When I saw that a petition for the Star Wars Death
    Star actually warranted time, money, and energy from the government
    to post a response, I actually begged, not only on my personal
    page, but on our non-profit’s, Jeremy Cares, page. It is so
    troubling that people will spend countles minutes watching cute cat
    videos, but we struggle to get this signed.

    Reply
  87. Ann

     /  January 25, 2013

    Signed and shared. Cancer can eat a dick. Keep rockin
    RoMama!

    Reply
  88. teach

     /  January 25, 2013

    SUSD Superintendent forwarded the request you sent to him and allowed the principals to share it with their staff! Yay!

    Reply
  89. Elīna

     /  January 25, 2013

    Dear Maya, Im just a girl from far away but i just came
    home from amazing concert wich was in church. This was a charity
    concert for children with autism. It was reallr really sweet
    concert – so many good words and nice songs were said and sang :) I
    was waching this concert and heard someones footsteps – someone was
    running – i turned around and saw a little boy from audience – he
    looked 2 or 3 years old and i was like – wooow, he looks a bit like
    your beautiful baby boy Ronan! He smiled and ran there around.. For
    me it was like seeing an angel there in church! :) RONAN IS AN
    ANGEL – A BEAUTIFUL ANGEL WHO LOOKS AFTER YOU! :) Be strong! ♥ With
    love, Elīna

    Reply
  90. Hi Maya, I signed this when you first posted and
    shared…just signed again under a different account and I have
    been sharing on FB and Twitter. I will do what I can to help pass
    this one and get signatures for you!! Thank you for continuing to
    fight, you are incredible…

    Reply
  91. smokey216

     /  January 25, 2013

    Hopefully I’m not leaving this comment twice…Maya, I
    signed this and shared back when you first posted, and I just
    shared again these past few days, on FB and Twitter. I will do what
    I can to try to help you get the signatures you need! Thank you for
    continuing to fight, you are incredible…Melanie H

    Reply
  92. Jackie Guthrie

     /  January 25, 2013

    Maya, I keep trying to sign the damn thing and it won’t let me! It says I have to receive some confirmation in my email account before it will allow me to sign, but that email never comes. I’ve tried at least 5 times. I want to sign, Maya, I do. I’m crying right now out of frustration, because I want to help, but feel fucking HELPLESS!

    Reply
  93. Sarah Milhollen

     /  January 25, 2013

    Love you Maya (and fam.) you are an AMAZING soul!!!
    Rock on!!!!

    Reply
  94. Jenn

     /  January 25, 2013

    Wishing the world would take notice!

    Reply
  95. Emily Pedrick

     /  January 25, 2013

    Hi. I’m just an eighth grader, and I know that you probably won’t see this but I wanted to post it anyways. I’ve been sick for about a year over how awful this world of childhood cancer is. Sometimes I’ll go into the school bathroom and just cry over the seven lives I know will be lost that day. For history, we had to write a paper on a problem facing the U.S. today (such as climate change, politics, blah blah blah) but I decided to write mine on the only thing that really matters: The attrocity of pediatric cancer. I ended up having to change my paper because it was too “bias” (meaning I just put in all the realities but my teacher was unable to handle the truth), but I wanted you too (maybe) see the paper. Sorry for all the citations and for its super long length…

    “Children with cancer are like candles in the wind who accept the possibility that they are in danger of being extinguished by a gust of wind from nowhere and yet, as they flicker and dance to remain alive, their brilliance challenges the darkness and dazzles those of us who watch their light”(“Quotes”). Some people think of pediatric cancer as just adult cancer in smaller bodies, but they have never asked or answered the key question: what is childhood cancer? This paper will reveal what exactly pediatric cancer is, and what is being done to help prevent and treat childhood cancer. “When your child is sick, statistics mean nothing. Its either 100% or 0%” (“Quotes”).
    When most people think of pediatric cancer they think of a rare occurrence in children around age five. In reality, the average age of death due to pediatric cancer is eight, and around 13,500 children are diagnosed with pediatric cancer every year. That means forty-six children diagnosed every day (“Childhood Cancer Stats”). To pair that number with reality, imagine two classes of children in elementary school. Imagine that all of those children were diagnosed with cancer today. Now realize that happens every day. It is expected that in 2012 about 12,060 children will be diagnosed with cancer. In contrast, around 80% of children diagnosed with cancer will survive five years or more. Nevertheless, the five-year survival rate varies depending on the type of cancer (“What Are the Key Statistics”). In pediatric cancer, around 80% of children with cancer have cancer that has metastasized by the diagnosis, meaning that the cancer is present in more than one spot (“Neuroblastoma Facts”). Another stereotype of childhood cancer is that it is rare in children relative to other diseases. However, pediatric cancer is the leading cause of death by disease in the United States, and childhood cancer kills more than pediatric AIDs, asthma, diabetes, cystic fibrosis, and congenital anomalies combined (“What Are the Key Statistics”). Also, 15% of cancer related deaths are due to pediatric cancer (“The Grim Statistics”). Pediatric cancer appears to be more common in boys than in girls. About one in three hundred boys will develop pediatric cancer before they reach their twentieth birthday, and only one in three hundred thirty three girls will develop cancer before they turn twenty (“Childhood Cancer Statistics”). This year, about 1,340 children are expected to die from childhood cancer (“What Are the Key Statistics”).
    According to the American Cancer Society, there are eight main types of pediatric cancer. The most common types of childhood cancer are Leukemia, Brain and other nervous system tumors, Neuroblastoma, Wilms tumor, Lymphoma, Rhabdomyosarcoma, Retinoblastoma, and Bone cancer. There are other types of cancers found in children, but they are more rare than these cancers. Leukemia cancers are the most common cancers found in children. They make up about 34% of cancers in children. Leukemia cancers are found in the bone marrow and the blood. The most common leukemia types in children are acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL) and acute myelogenous leukemia (AML). Leukemia may cause bone and joint pain, fatigue and weakness, fever and weight loss. The second most common types of childhood cancers are brain and nervous system tumors. They account for 27% of childhood cancers. Since there are any types of brain tumors, the treatment and outlook for each is different. Most brain tumors in children start in the lower parts of the brain, causing headaches, nausea, vomiting, blurred or double vision, dizziness, and trouble walking or handling objects (“What Are the Most”). Neuroblastoma is the third most common type of childhood cancer. Neuroblastoma is a cancer that affects the area outside of the brain and spinal cord (the peripheral nervous system). It is responsible for 12% of the deaths due to childhood cancer in patients under 15 years of age (“Addition of Immunotherapy Boosts”). Wilms tumor is responsible for5% of childhood cancers, and is mainly found in children 3-4 years old, and is unlikely to occur in children older than six. It is a cancer that starts in one, or rarely, in both kidneys. It might show up as a lump in the belly, fever, pain, nausea, or poor appetite. Lymphoma starts in certain cells in the immune system, lymphocytes, and often affects lymph nodes or other lymph tissues, bone marrow and other organs. There are two types of lymphoma: Hodgkin and Non-Hodgkin. Hodgkin lymphoma makes up 4% of childhood cancers, and is usually found in early adulthood or late adulthood, and is rare in children under five. Non–Hodgkin lymphoma also accounts for 4% of pediatric cancers. It is more likely to occur in children under fifteen, and it is rare in children under three (“What Are the Most”). Rhabdomyosarcoma is a cancer that starts in cells that normally turn into skeletal muscles. It can occur in the head, neck, groin, belly, pelvis, arm, or leg. It may cause pain, swelling, or both. This is the most common type of soft tissue sarcoma in children, and makes up about 3% of childhood cancers. Retinoblastoma is an eye cancer and it accounts for 3% of childhood cancers. It usually occurs in two-year olds, and is rarely found in kids older than six. Retinoblastomas are usually found because somebody notices a child’s eye looks unusual (in pictures, the pupil may appear white or pink). There are 2 main types of primary bone cancer, Osteosarcoma, which makes up 3% of childhood cancers, and Ewing sarcoma, which accounts for 1% of childhood cancers. Osteosarcoma develops when a bone is moving quickly. It causes bone pain that gets worse at night or with activity, and can cause swelling in the area around the bone. Ewing sarcoma causes bone pain and is commonly started in the pelvis, chest wall, or long leg bones (“What Are the Most”).
    Over the past two years, there have been some treatment breakthroughs for cancer. Many new adult cancer treatments are not at first suitable to treat pediatric cancer, but after some alterations the treatments could eventually become suitable to treat children with cancer. In the past year, two new drugs have been approved for the treatment of melanoma. Melanoma, a skin cancer, can be easily removed and treated if it has not spread, but if the cancer has spread to different parts of the body, treatment can be difficult. The first new drug, Yervoy, allows the immune system to better attack the cancer. The second drug, Zelboraf, blocks the effect of a mutation called BRAF. The mutation BRAF, present in around half of melanoma cases, catalysts tumor growth. Although Zelboraf works very well in patients, the tumor that it treats can eventually become resistant to the medicine and cause secondary skin cancers. Another new treatment being tested is
Trametinib. Trametinib is a pill that will block a protein called MEK that is involved in the signals that spur tumor growth. After a six-month trial, 81% of people in the trametinib testing group were alive and 67% were alive in the chemotherapy group (Pollack). Another new study is being done testing T cell therapy. T cell therapy uses T cells, immune cells taken from a patient’s blood and alters them then puts them back in the body. These T cells will then hopefully attach to and kill the cancerous B-cells of ALL, CLL, B-cell lymphoma, and Leukemia. 
So far, this procedure has only been done on three adults, and if it is successful enough, it will then move on to be tried for children. Out of the three adults tested so far, the results are looking positive. The T-cells have survived for months after administration, and the T-cells have been able to kill large amounts of cancer cells (“Gene Modified T Cell”). Also, a study on immunotherapy was conducted in 2010. Immunotherapy uses an antibody to target a substance on the surface of tumorous cells that is also found on some normal nerve cells. Immunotherapy would be used to treat Neuroblastoma. 
The two-year survival rate for Neuroblastoma with standard treatment is 46%, and with standard therapy plus immunotherapy the two-year survival rate is 66%. On the downside, Immunotherapy has many side effects, including pain, low blood pressure, blood leaking from capillaries into surrounding tissue, and hypersensitivity reactions. These side effects were temporary, and stopped once the treatment ended. Malcolm Smith, M.D., Ph.D. decided that even though this treatment proved to be effective, there needs to be a lot more work done before Immunotherapy can be used because of its toxicity (“Addition of Immunotherapy Boosts”). A study of Angiogenesis could be pivotal in cancer prevention. Angiogenesis is the creation of new blood vessels. The excess of angiogenesis is what feeds cancerous tumors and causes them to grow. Antiangiogenesis is stopping angiogenesis, which would starve the tumor of its nutrients and oxygen, and cause the tumor to slowly disappear. There are many foods that can be eaten to implement Antiangiogenesis, such as strawberries and tomatoes. However, many children are diagnosed with tumorous cancers before they are able to eat these foods (Li).
    While the five-year survival rate of pediatric cancer is increasing, there are still many more years of a child’s life after five years. About two-thirds of pediatric cancer survivors will face at least one chronic health condition, and a quarter of survivors will face an after effect from their treatment that is severe or life threatening. These effects are commonly referred to as late effects (“Childhood Cancer Statistics”). There are three main factors that determine the risk of late effects: the patient, the tumor, and the treatment. Surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or stem cell transplant can cause late effects, and fall under the treatment category. Tumor factors depend on the type of cancer and the tumor’s location in the body. The patient–related factors are gender, age of diagnosis and treatment, length of time since diagnosis and treatment, family history of cancer, health problems before cancer, and health habits (“Late Effects of Treatment”). Gender is a factor because women are 50% more likely to have a chronic condition or a severe or life threatening condition as a result of pediatric cancer (Sherri, McAuliffe). Late effects can affect: organs, tissues, body functions, growth and development, mood, feelings, actions, thinking, learning, memory, social and psychological adjustment, and may increase the risk of second cancers (“Late Effects of Treatment”). Childhood cancer survivors who received radiation therapy or chemotherapy can be at risk for neurocognitive late effects. Neurocognitive late effects can cause trouble thinking, problem solving, learning, remembering things, paying attention, and concentrating (Kunin-Batson). The most common causes of death in pediatric cancer survivors are that the cancer comes back, a new cancer forms, or heart and lung damage (“Late Effects of Treatment”).
    In the world of cancer research, it goes without saying that you cannot make progress searching for a cure or for better treatments if you do not have the money. However, pediatric cancer received less than 3 percent of the National Cancer Institute’s annual budget last year (“Neuroblastoma Facts”). This year, the Senate Appropriations Committee encouraged the National Cancer Institute to raise pediatric cancer funding to more that 5% of their annual budget because cancer still remains the leading disease-related cause of death in children. The committee stated that less toxic and more effective treatments are needed (“NCI Funding of Childhood”). Another way to look into cancer without looking at the death rate is to look at person-years of life lost. Year life lost is the amount of years an average person would live had they not had cancer. Childhood cancer receives $940 per year life lost, while prostate cancer receives over $10,000 per year life lost (“NCI Funding: More Lies”). Without proper funding, it is difficult to improve the treatments and survival rates of pediatric cancer.
    In conclusion, cancer is the number one disease related death in children in America, and it kills around forty-six children every day. While the five-year survival rate of pediatric cancer is around 80%, most childhood cancer survivors face either emotional or physical long-term effects. There are many different types of pediatric cancer, which means that they cannot all be treated the same. There are cancer breakthroughs occurring, but the breakthroughs still have to be adapted for pediatric use. A lack of new findings is due to a lack in funding for childhood cancer. Lance Armstrong once said, “If children have the ability to ignore all odds and percentages, then maybe we can all learn from them. When you think about it, what other choice is there but to hope? We have two options, medically and emotionally: give up, or fight like hell”

    Reply
  96. Pippin

     /  January 25, 2013

    I’ve signed.

    Reply
  97. Nickelle Crowley

     /  January 26, 2013

    You did it Maya! Your voice rang loud and clear. The White House will be gold in September! I am so thankful to you for your commitment to awareness and your continued fight to end pediatric cancer. My daughter Ava has been fighting for 9 months, NB stage 4.

    Nickelle Crowley
    http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/avacrowley

    Reply
  98. rachelcortest

     /  January 30, 2013

    I totally agree with everything you have said. Much love to you and yours

    Reply
  99. Darlene Whitney

     /  January 30, 2013

    This is the first I’ve heard of this. So sad. God bless these little ones <3

    Reply
  1. Please sign this petition. Your voice is needed… | Curtains Are for Windows. Not Childhood Cancer.

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