Dear Empire State Building, Part 5

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Dear Empire State Building,

First of all, I was born and raised in NYC and am devastated that such a huge landmark in my city is refusing to help with a cause that is so important.

I am a pediatric nurse that takes care of children with cancer. I have watched multiple patients of mine suffer and die right in front of my very eyes from this horrific disease. I am the person that has to administer the chemotherapy, the poison that is these children’s only hope. I am the one that has to change their port needles weekly (imagine a 3 year old, needing 2 needles in their chest to be switched out every week). I am the one that has to give them a shot every day when their counts are low and they are at high risk for infection. I am the one that has to force these children to take multiple medicines that they hate, every day, multiple times a day. Imagine a 3 year old, begging me to put his medication that needs to be taken by mouth in his IV. Or pleading with me to give him the “orange”medicine instead, the only one he actually likes. I am the one that has to give a screaming toddler eye drops every 2 hours, while they receive a certain type of chemo.

I see first hand, daily what these children go through. I see so many children with cancer that is so rare, that they are using a protocol from hundreds of hears ago, or sometimes there isn’t even a protocol and they just have to make it up as they go along.

Even some of the nurses that I work with aren’t aware that september is childhood cancer awareness month. Or that gold is the color for pediatric cancer. These children so desperately need this awareness. I can’t possibly understand how you could argue that these innocent children don’t deserve for the empire state building to light up gold for them. Please, I beg of you, to reconsider. I can only hope that you are not refusing to do this out of spite and that someone that works for the administration has a heart and will do the right thing. It isn’t too late!

Ariel Brettholz,

RN at New York Presbyterian Hospital in New York City