Tuesday, January 04, 2005

One for the "Angel Files"

"I must take issue with the term 'a mere child,' for it has been my invariable experience that the company of a mere child is infinitely preferable to that of a mere adult." Fran Lebowitz

I have an eight year old nephew with a rare form of cancer. When he was barely four a large, invasive brain and ear tumor was removed -- with those magic words "clean margins."

But the price was also large: complete loss of hearing in one ear, missing one carotid artery, compromised balance (inner and middle ear also removed), neurological deficits, regular MRI's and other invasive tests, because recurrence is Not rare.

He worries about people who aren't as lucky as he is. (Can you stand it, is his own sentiment.) At the moment, he's very concerned about all the people affected by the tsunami. After all, he has a mom and dad and sister and a dog, plus grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends who all love him, and he's alive to enjoy his life.

My nephew and his family live at the Jersey shore. Every New Year's Eve their community gets together on the beach for a big celebration, including "midnight at 8pm" fireworks for the kids.

This year the weather was warm and he was inspired to take advantage of such a festive audience. He and his six year old sister set up a lemonade stand. He made a sign that said "TSUNAMI SAVERS."

They raised $125.

When life hands you lemons, my nephew will make you lemonade.

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